[de fles-sen-lik-ker, de fles-sen-lik-kers]
"Flessenlikker" is composed of "fles" and "likker, which respectively translate to "bottle" and "licker", hence "bottle licker". The "flessenlikker" is actually a kitchen tool, which has become a bit obsolete
nowadays. A "flessenlikker" is/was used to scrape a bottle of yogurt or pudding completely empty. A nice example of Dutch economy 🙂
Instead of bottles, pudding and yogurt comes in packs now. Most youngsters will have never heard of a "flessenlikker"…
– "Waar is de flessenlikker? Deze fles yoghurt is bijna leeg."
("Where is the bottle scraper? This bottle of yogurt is almost empty.")
– "Heb jij de flessenlikker gezien?" – "Een flessenlikker, wat ouderwets!"
("Have you seen the bottle scraper?" – "A bottle scraper, that’s old-fashioned!")
– "De flessenlikker…een geniale uitvinding! Jammer dat er geen flessen meer gebruikt worden voor yoghurt of pudding…"
("The bottle scraper…a brilliant invention! Too bad that bottles are no longer used for yogurt or pudding…")
– Fles: bottle [noun] [de fles, de flessen].
– Likken: to lick [verb] [likte, gelikt].
– "De hond likte de hand van zijn baasje."
("The dog licked his master´s hand.")
– Schrapen: to scrape [verb] [schraapte, geschraapt].
– "De keel schrapen": to clear one´s throat. Lit.: to scrape one’s throat.
For more information on the bottle scraper, see Wikipedia.
I learned in my Nederlands als Tweede Taal lessens that these things were invented for you spendthrift Dutchies to get every last drop of vla out of a bottle. I thoroughly approve!
Well, I brought one back to the states several years ago and still use it. My friends here thought it was ingenious! It works well when I want that last bit of jam or apple sauce from a glass jar or soup from a can, too.
I use mine still – brought back from NL years ago – to get out that last bit of applesauce and jam from glass jars and soup from cans. All my American friends want one!
Interesting word! But, Simon, “spendthrift” doesn’t mean frugal or thrifty, but the opposite; it denotes someone who is reckless with money or spends improvidently.
Thank you for a bit a nostalgia! I LOVE (!) flessenlikkers. It’s the ultimate Dutch item!
Thanks for the correction. Confusing, because thrift means “Extreme care in spending money; reluctance to spend money unnecessarily”. Bit counter-intuitive, but hey, since when was English logical?