Though not yet on kitchen shelves, a new silicone-coated spatula from Bryant Rubber Corp., Harbor City, Calif. (www.bryantrubber.com), promises to be longer lasting, less likely to melt, and less costly to produce than ordinary kitchen spatulas. The new utensil combines Amodel polyphthalamide (PPA) high-performance polymer from Solvay Advanced Polymers LLC, Alpharetta, Ga. (www.solvayadvancedpolymers.com), with Bryant Rubber's Select Primerless Adhesion Polymer System (SPAPS) technology. Kitchen utensils made with this combination won't begin melting until the temperature tops 550°F, says Bryant Rubber. Other composites, in comparison, begin melting around 300°F. Higher melt resistance extends the life of the product but also boosts kitchen safety: Less heat transfers from the utensil to the cook's hand.

Other benefits, Amodel PPA makes utensils more rigid so cooks can move food around the pan more easily, and utensils will keep their shape. Also, SPAPS silicone rubber is nonmarking and doesn't wear delicate pan surfaces.