This week I teamed up with Carl Jacobson to make a salad bowl set. Carl turned the bowl and I made the salad forks. We had planned on making each of our pieces from maple.  Functional & practical projects are among my favorite to make and this one was no exception.  Lettuce makes a good canvas to paint a great meal, even if it’s not super healthy.  Making this project with Carl Jacobson was a real pleasure and I had a great deal of fun doing it.


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I started by gluing my pattern to a piece of 1 1/4″ thick piece using a gluestick.

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Starting to drill the 1/4″ holes with a forstner bit to minimize drilling tearout.

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I then could switch to a standard twist bit to make the through hole.

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Time to cut out the pattern on the bandsaw.  Make sure to not cut off the layout lines.  A coping saw or jigsaw could be used in place of a bandsaw.
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Sanding to the lines is made easy with my newly acquired 1″ belt sander I got from my favorite import tool store.  Doing this by hand would be tedious and this seemed to be the best method.

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An oscillating spindle sander works great to sand the curve detail.  A drum sander in a drill or drill press would do a good job too.

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After Carl had the bottom side of the bowl roughed out, he flipped the bowl blank around and started on the inner part of the bowl.

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Using a bowl gouge, Carl makes it look easy to start clearing away material to start forming the inside of the fiddleback maple bowl.

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By now I had glued on the edge pattern and started roughing out the curve to the fork on the bandsaw.
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Belt sanding the outside curve of the fork is a quick way to help finalize the curve.

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Back over at the oscillating spindle sander again to finish up the concave grip detail.

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Carl worked on finishing up the inside of the bowl while I wiped on a few coats of mineral oil to the freshly finish sanded salad forks.

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After sanding the inside of the bowl smooth, Carl flipped it around and cupped the bottom of the bowl so that it would sit flat.

(ep35) salad bowl set 20Speaking from first hand experience, the bowl turned out beautifully.  A special thank you to Carl for giving me the bowl.  If you haven’t seen Carl’s work, check him out over at his website  He does some amazing work!

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It didn’t take me long to test out the new salad bowl set with this ginger grilled chicken salad.  Yum.  A recipe for this salad is listed below.

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Nick’s Ginger Grilled Chicken Salad

Ingredients (DRESSING):

1 cup diced onion

2/3 cup olive oil

1/2 cup rice vinegar

1/4 – 1/2 cup diced fresh ginger (to taste)

1/3 cup ketchup

4 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

4 teaspoons white sugar

1-2 clove(s) minced garlic

small can diced pineapple or approx. 1/2 cup

Add all the ingredients into a blender and pulse to combine and puree.  Set aside.


Ingredients (SALAD):

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 yellow pepper

1 red pepper

1 small onion

2-4 portobello mushroom caps (sliced)

1 tomato

salad greens of your choice (I used Boston butter and spring mix)

Grill the chicken to cook through.  If you can, marinade the chicken overnight in 1/3cup soy sauce & 1/4 cup water.  This helps make the chicken moist and tender.  Set aside the grilled chicken and grill the sliced veggies until al dente.  Place the lettuce and tomatoes in your bowl and top with grilled chicken and veggies.  Drizzle over the salad dressing, toss to combine.  Optional: Garnish with croutons and pickled ginger.  ENJOY!

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