From Apartment Therapy’s cooking site, The Kitchn, comes 150 recipes and a cooking school with 50 essential lessons, as well as a guide to organizing your kitchen–plus storage tips, tool reviews, inspiration from real kitchens, maintenance suggestions, 200 photographs, and much more.
“There is no question that the kitchen is the most important room of the home,” say Sara Kate Gillingham and Faith Durand of the beloved cooking site and blog, The Kitchn.
The Kitchn offers two books in one: a trove of techniques and recipes, plus a comprehensive guide to organizing your kitchen so that it’s one of your favorite places to be.
· 50 essential how-to’s, from preparing perfect grains to holding a chef’s knife like a pro
· 150 all-new and classic recipes from The Kitchn, including Breakfast Tacos, Everyday Granola, Slow Cooker Carnitas, One-Pot Coconut Chickpea Curry, and No-Bake Banana and Peanut Butter Caramel Icebox Cake
For Your Kitchen:
· A shopping list of essentials for your cabinets and drawers (knives, appliances, cookware, and tableware), with insider advice on what’s worth your money
· Solutions for common kitchen problems like limited storage space and quirky layouts
· A 5-minute-a-day plan for a clean kitchen
· Tips for no-pressure gatherings
· A look inside the kitchens of ten home cooks around the country, and how they enjoy their spaces
The Kitchn Cookbook gives you the recipes, tools, and real-life inspiration to make cooking its own irresistible reward.
Why (and How) a Beautiful Kitchen Means Better Food
A kitchen’s first task is functional: It is a place to produce good food with cleanliness and efficiency. But functionality and beauty go hand in hand. We’ve met people who seem afraid to have beautiful things in their cooking space—they react in shock and dismay when they see paintings or rugs in a busy kitchen. “What if it gets ruined? That’s so nonfunctional!” We couldn’t disagree more. Everything in life decays and wears out eventually. Having something you consider beautiful in the kitchen is a nudge toward enjoying the act of cooking, a reminder that food is more than fuel.
A beautiful kitchen also helps us remember to clean regularly. When you enjoy your space, even in some small way, it’s so much more pleasurable to keep it clean.
Once you’ve worked on your cooking zones and storage capacity, find creative ways to make beauty and functionality go hand in hand. A kitchen you enjoy is one that will motivate you to nourish your household. Here are a few ways to bring a bit of beauty into even the dingiest of kitchens:
- Enjoy the beauty of food itself. Heap oranges or persimmons in a dish on the countertop (this also will remind you to eat them promptly!). Tomatoes, onions, even sweet potatoes have an earthy beauty that grounds a kitchen. Store herbs with their cut ends in a shallow glass of water, which will keep them fresh and handy for snipping, as well as add a splash of green to your workspace.
- Cover ugly countertops with a huge butcher block. If you have a tiny and hideous laminate countertop, cover it up with a hefty cutting board, which is more beautiful and also of course very functional.
- Hang a vibrant work of art. No backsplash? Frame an inexpensive print and hang it behind the stove. Yes, the glass will get greasy eventually, but it’s easier to clean glass than a painted wall.
- Line drawers and cabinets with colorful fabric or paper. Apply fabric wallpaper to the backs of your cabinets using fabric starch; the cloth wallpaper is both washable and removable. Line drawers with pretty paper from an art supply store.
- Enhance the sense of space with a mirror. A big mirror hung on one wall or over the kitchen table reflects light, helps make up for the lack of a window, and increases the feeling of spaciousness.
- Lay down a rug. You may think it will get irredeemably dirty, but a patterned rug will hide stains and is easy to vacuum. With a nonslip rug pad beneath, it’s also nicer to stand on than hard, cold tile.
- Adorn the table or windowsill with living plants or fresh flowers. Fresh flowers are a simple grace note for any kitchen. Splurge on them to make your space feel more special, or snip evergreen twigs or even flowering weeds from your backyard or on your walk home. Anything alive makes the kitchen feel more welcoming.
- Paint! Paint is a major tool for the cook with an ugly, dark kitchen. Don’t forget the ceiling, where color can instantly make the room more cheerful (think sky blue, lemon yellow, pale washes of bright colors). Painting the entire room can seem daunting, but with careful cleaning, taping, and priming, you can do an expert job by yourself.
- Supply music or a radio. The companionship of radio is something we appreciate in our kitchens. Faith keeps a Tivoli radio on her windowsill and listens to NPR and podcasts while she cooks; she plugs in an iPod for dinner parties.