When cooking, a lot can be going on at once. Everybody at some stage is guilty of being a bit of a messy cook.
Don’t hang your head in shame! If you have trouble being tidy in the kitchen there are ways around it. Don’t despair. Take on board the following points and you’ll be a prize winning chef in no time…
Problem 1: You can never remember where you put utensils and majorly panic at crucial cooking points.
Collect and organise your cooking equipment in a logical order. Give each item its own place. Try to become a creature of habit and keep the items that your frequently use in accessible places. Make use of side plates and bowls to place dirty knives and spoons. This will ensure that you’re not fumbling about, covering yourself in muck and feeling foolish when you’re reaching for something to stir with.
Problem 2: The countertop is a jumble of ingredients, vegetable peel, spillage and dirty knives.
Break your recipe into stages and dedicate short intervals for a tidy up. Fill up the dishwasher, blitz wash majorly dirty dishes and collect vegetable peel in handy bags that you can dispose of in the flick of a wrist. Most important point of all? Don’t let a messy kitchen bog you down. You’re in control. Not the mess.
Problem 3: The fridge is even worse. You dream of the day you open, spot and grab the necessary ingredients.
Organisation is key. Think of your beautifully organised pencil case at school. Not a gel pen was out of place. Keep the same mantra to the fridge. Use shelves and compartments to section separate ingredients. Make use of labels. Before you know, you’ll be able to reach in blindfolded and pluck the correct leaf of the herb you require.
Problem 4: Whenever you work with pastry it become a sticky, terrible, gloopy mess.
Pasty is one of the biggest woes of all time. Within minutes it’s stuck to all of the surfaces and you’re arms deep weeping like a spoilt five year old. There’s one simple solution to sticky sheets. Chill your pastry in the fridge for an hour! The butter will solidify and with a sprinkling of flour you’ll be able to manipulate it how you like, no problemo.
Problem 5: There are crumbs and piles of food all over the floor.
Well there’s one and only one solution here: Get a dog.
Problem 6: You are covered from head to foot in sauce.
Again, one solution. Buy an attractive apron or some wonderful chef blacks. Just like Ben. Cracking.
Problem 7: There are no clean dishes for the finished product.
Always start the cooking process with your kitchen reset to square one. Ensure you have an empty dishwasher, clean plates, cutlery, utensils and spotless work surface. This avoids the surprises like reaching for a plate and realising you have none. You can also prepare your ingredients. If you’re working with many a herb or spice, measure them out into ramekins first.
Problem 8: There’s no space to put down baking hot oven trays full of food.
Always remember to have a decent set of oven gloves on hand. Your finger tips are useful and you will probably need them later down the line if you ever want your career as a violinist to take off. Before you open the oven, clear space. Otherwise you’ll be dancing around with burning hot food and the health and safety brigade will be knocking at your door.
Problem 9: After roasting meat your tray looks like it can never be used again.
Soaking your butchered dishes will not only eradicate the grease but also ensure you don’t get arthritis in your elbow trying to scrub it off. Decent washing up liquid, a soft scourer and hot water will get them brand spanking new. Just have patience. Or employ your younger, annoying sibling.
Problem 10: You’re so exhausted after cooking you can’t really be bothered to clean up so you leave it until the morning.
NO WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU. Do it now. Seriously. If you let your dishes pile up you will end up in the messy hole. It’s deep, it’s unclean and it’s hard to get out of. Part of cooking, unfortunately, is the washing up. Put on some Taylor Swift and shake it off. You’ll thoroughly deserve to put your feet up.
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