28 Apr 10 tips for a more organized kitchen
With spring upon us, you may already be looking around you for opportunities to de-clutter and get organized. After all, there’s no use putting up a fresh coat of paint if you can’t even see the walls for all the bric-a-brac that has accumulated over the winter! If you love to cook, the problem is intensified, especially in today’s modern (read: smaller) kitchens, because it’s imperative to have enough space to turn out beautiful meals. Here’s how to get your kitchen – arguably the most important room in the house – organized, streamlined and looking the way you want it to.
- Get things up instead of in. We’re big fans of pot racks you suspend from the ceiling. Let’s face it, who has cupboards big enough for a wok? And if you do, imagine what else could go in that cupboard. Pot and pan handles have a hole for a reason…make use of them.
- Clear counters daily. It’s amazing what can creep onto a countertop: nickels, interesting rocks, plastic toys…even if you don’t have kids, why are you keeping your keys, flyers, and half-eaten packages of mixed nuts on your counters? Clear kitchen counters daily to avoid overwhelm, contamination and confusion.
- Use magnets. They can suspend everything from knives to spice jars, right on your fridge.
- Ditch the big fruit bowl in favour of a hanging one, or make a fruit centrepiece in the dining room instead.
- Clean as you go. During the breaks in preparing a recipe, such as while sauces are reducing or water is coming to a boil, or the soufflé is baking in your gas range, wash the mixing bowls, load the dishwasher and put away ingredients. If you save everything up for the end, you risk creating a pile so big you can’t face it until morning…and you don’t want to be facing it then.
- Peek into the far reaches of your fridge and freezer each month to ditch any UFOs – unidentified frozen objects! While it’s a good idea to date and label everything you store, it doesn’t always happen, and even the incredible freshness-sealing climate control technologies of a Caloric refrigerator can’t save food that’s long past its prime.
- Set up your pantry with items organized by shelf. For example, baking items on one shelf, breakfast foods and cereals on another, pasta ingredients on another. This will ensure that frequently used items are always within your reach, not buried behind cans of esoteric sauces or beans of a mysterious age.
- It’s okay to have a junk drawer. Unless your guests are very chummy (and then, it doesn’t matter) they won’t be going through your drawers – and if they do, they will have to smile to admit that they too have a drawer full of random chopsticks, coupons, twist ties, plastic cutlery and rarely used hand appliances.
- Keep cut up fruits and vegetables in your fridge. This may seem unrelated to the kitchen, but in fact it’s the height of organization because instead of having to pull out and dirty a knife and cutting board every time you need a single vegetable, everything will be ready – kept fresh and crisp by Caloric IonAir technology.
- Invest in the right equipment. If you have 100 pieces of mismatched Tupperware and 4 small saucepans but no stock pot, purge the old and start over with a more streamlined system, whether that means a new set of storage containers, a new set of dishes, or a new refrigerator that gives you enough space to accomplish all your culinary goals.