Getting takeout food is a convenient solution when time is short, hunger pangs are strong and energy levels are low. However, if you regularly choose takeout over delicious home cooking, you are seriously missing out. Here are some design basics that help turn badly performing kitchens into places where mouthwatering magic happens:
Spice up with space
A key failing of many kitchens is lack of space. Look at the organization of key areas and make tough decisions. Countertops are the action stations where cooking related stuff is centered, so go big with the dimensions. If you are a gadget-junkie, wouldn’t it be great to have the space to leave them out on the countertop, ever ready for action? Gelato machine for lemon sorbet, spice grinder for chicken tandoori, electric waffle iron for the perfect breakfast – whatever it is, give it some space!
Choose pale materials, such as marble or polished concrete, for counters in smaller kitchens to give an illusion of space. Fit plenty of task lighting so that you can see what you are chopping. Granite has glossy glamor, or choose soapstone for an earthier feel – you will be looking at your countertops every time you enter the kitchen, so make sure you totally love them.
Where do you stow all those pots, pans, crockery, flatware, utensils, table linen, recipe books and cleaning products? What about store cupboard ingredients? Fresh fruit and veg? Refrigerated and frozen items? Wine? The best advice is to assess your storage needs and then triple it – because there is never enough kitchen storage space.
Although not the cheapest option, a fitted kitchen guarantees you squeeze the most out of the space available. A well-designed kitchen with fitted cabinets, drawers, shelving and built-in appliances looks streamlined and flows well. If you can’t commit to permanent fittings, try movable cabinets on castors – these look very stylish.
Dinner is served
Cooking is a sociable pastime and many kitchens are now designed as communal living areas with defined spaces for preparation and eating. A dining table and chairs where meals can be lingered over is essential if you are to reap (and eat!) the benefits of a well-designed kitchen.
Recipe for success
The kitchen design mantra that states the sink, cooker and work surfaces must be aligned in a triangle is a good guiding rule, but most of us are forced to work with what we’ve got in terms of where plumbing and electricity feeds are concerned. The perfect cooking range for creating ravishing recipes has at least six gas burners and an eye level double oven. Install a microwave for flexibility if desired.
Waste disposal and cleaning are elements of kitchen design that should be considered from the start. Where will trash go? Ingenious solutions such as countertops with built in retainers to catch food waste work well, or will you fit an under sink waste muncher? Keeping kitchens looking clean is easier with dirt-disguising shades; many designers recommend slate flooring for its stylish looks and ability to hide a multitude of stains. Streamlined, smooth surfaces clean up easily, so avoid tiled, grouted splashbacks in favor of stainless steel or glass alternatives cut to size.
When you have a perfectly designed kitchen, you don’t need to resort to takeout. Eat better food, save money and feel healthier by creating delicious meals in your very own home kitchen.