By Funmi Ajumobi
The kitchen is an area of your home that you get used to more often than most other areas as home makers. In fact, the kitchen is popularly described as an office for every woman. Whether you have a professional cook or you are your own cook, your kitchen must be attractive and giving attention enough just like the way your living room is given attention. Have you entered your kitchen before and you are tired of the way everything is clustered? The truth is that there no way cooking can be interesting with a clustered kitchen.
Whether you have a small or football space as kitchen, it does not guarantee an easy and interesting cook if everything you need, you have to look for it all the time, like you have to look for cooking spoon or your sieve by scattering the cabinet or the kitchen store each time you cook. It gets you tired and this affects the end result of whatever you prepared. At times, you finish cooking and you are tired to taste the food because of unorganized kitchen. So if your kitchen were more organized and simple to use, your life would feel easier and cooking won’t be a burden.
So, what and how do you arrange your kitchen for an interesting cooking?
You probably can’t change the placement of the refrigerator, or where the sink is in your kitchen, but you can change your relation to these spaces and what you choose to store and set up in the vicinity. Since your aim is to improve your cooking flow, the first thing to do is to divide your kitchen into zones.
Consumables zone: This is the area used to store most of your food. This is your refrigerator and your pantry or food cabinets. Do not scatter your food stuff everywhere. Look for air tight containers to store your food stuff. Don’t tie them in nylon bags or paper bags where cockroaches, rat and other insects can have a field day with them. Storing food stuff in nylons or paper bags makes everywhere untidy and they also harbor cockroaches. Arrange the containers on the cabinet for consumable zones. Other consumables like your provisions can be arranged in the same zone but on different tray in your cabinet.
Non-consumables zone: The area is used for everyday dishes, including plates, bowls, glasses, and spoons. Stylishly arrange your plates in the plates divider, create space in the open cabinet for your bowls, glasses, spoons for easy access. Hang your cooking spoons, knives and your mugs. It gives your kitchen a beautiful look. How do you feel when you need to take a cup of tea and you just take the mug without scampering everywhere for it before you see it? So whatever cabinet is closest to your dish rack is where you should store your dishes if possible.
Cleaning zone: This is the area that contains the sink (if you have one). You can store your cooking pots under the sink but be careful because of the pipe under the sink. You can divide under the sink into two parts. One part can be for cooking pots and the other part for soap and other cleaning materials like foam, scrubbing powder etc. So, you don’t need to look for them.
Preparation zone: The area where most of your kitchen preparation happens. It is where you can cut your vegetables, yam, salad etc. Do not use the space for storing bowls etc. Remove everything on top of your prep space like cutting board, grater etc after use. Always make your preparatory space available and accessible.
Cooking zone: The area that contains the stove, oven, and possibly the microwave. Do not store in this place bowls, pots etc on your cooker, microwave or stove. It spoils them quickly. When you want to cook and you have to start from removing pots and bowls kept on your cooker first before you start cleaning the stove tops because of dirt that rats or cockroaches must have kept on top, you are already tired. How sweet it is to just walk into your kitchen, take up the lighter from its zone and lite up the stove, take your pot from its zone, rinse from cleaning zone and on and on you move from one zone to the other for an easy cook!
Even if you have a small kitchen, you still probably have the essentials: a fridge (consumables zone), some cabinets (non-consumables zone), a sink (cleaning zone), a little countertop space (preparation zone), and a stove (cooking zone). Once you have mapped out your zones, there will be easy movement and cooking will be more interesting than you think.