I spend a lot of time in my kitchen.
I have had many kitchens over the years. I lived in Boston Proper for twenty-three years. During that time, I lived in seven different places. Most of them had kitchens the size of postage stamps. But I learned to make do with limited space. I also learned a few shortcuts and techniques along the way.
So, whether you want to ensure that your morning coffee is the perfect temperature, the marshmallows are soft enough for the post-sledding hot cocoa or that you have more counter space read on!
What is better than welcoming your day with a steaming cup of coffee, tea or cocoa? To be sure that your beverage of choice stays piping right out of the pot, warm your cup in advance by filling it with hot water. Let it sit for a minute or so, pour out the water and fill 'er up with your favorite morning beverage.
Marshmallows can get hard and stale if not eaten right away. To keep your marshmallows fresh and fluffy, store them in a resealable bag and put a slice of bread in with them. They will stay soft and delicious for much longer.
The holidays are right around the corner, sisters. Hosting guests can be nervewracking. And timing in the kitchen is everything. Even the most experienced hosts can be challenged by greeting guests and managing the finishing touches of your meal. In many cases, there are those final steps that are crucial, and you are under the gun. Instead of fumbling through my cookbooks for the final instructions I post them on a sticky note and stick it on the container holding the dish. For example, I will post "Heat at 350 for 10 minutes before serving".
Also, I use the same method for keeping straight which platter or bowl to hold each food. For example, "For Gruyere Puffs" or "For Mashed Yukon Gold Potatoes."
For many years, I lived in Boston where living space was small, and kitchen counter space was considered a luxury. To maximize my counter space, I would open a drawer and rest a cutting board on top. TA DAH! Instant counter space!
If you are heading out for the weekend, bring your herbs along! When I go away for the weekend and still, want to cook great food for my family. I don't want the hassle of bringing numerous jars of dried herbs along with me. Instead, I take a weekly pill box organizer filled with my seven favorite herbs along. I label each "day" with the herb and VOILA!
(The organizer I use holds one tbs of dried herbs per compartment).
What is better than a warm, delicious cookie after dinner? Rather than the hassle of making dinner AND cookie dough, make the batter in advance. Roll teaspoonfuls of it into balls, place on a cookie sheet and freeze. Once frozen, store the dough balls in a ziplock bag in the freezer until you are ready to bake. When you sit down for dinner, preheat your oven and by the time dinner is finished you can pop the dough into the oven, and 8 minutes later dessert is ready!
Above I shared the tip to freeze balls of cookie dough until you are ready to bake. Well, as I was working away in the kitchen this week I needed just a few strips of bacon. BUT, I had one package of bacon only that I did not want to open just for a few strips. So, guess what? I followed my tip but substituted the cookie dough for a slice of bacon rolled up. I took the remaining bacon strips, rolled 'em up and put them in a re-sealable bag. Next time I need a few slices all I will need to do is take from my stash.
And that's the dish......