Friday, August 19, 2011

Sans Kitchen: Month 4

The end of this month will mark four full months of life without a functioning kitchen. So I thought I would, eh, reflect on our little exercise in making the best of it.

For the first three months, there was absolutely zilch in our kitchen—no cabinets, counter tops, sink, or dishwasher. Luckily, we were able to plug in our fridge and our oven (the fridge was plugged into a living room wall and we just wrapped the oven cord around a corner into the kitchen outlet). Here's a picture from when we first set up our makeshift cucina:

(Now that we've been able to move the fridge and oven into their rightful places—and put away dishes and food—our makeshift kitchen now fits on one single Ikea bookshelf. Hurray!)

Since we were dropping so much dough on the renovation, Robert and I really wanted to resist spending money on eating out all the time. At first I had grand ambitions of making great home-cooked meals in the crockpot and the oven, but we ended up resorting to a lot of frozen food. And not because it was such a pain to cook—it really wasn't—but because it was such a pain to clean dirty pots/pans. We switched between using the hall bathroom sink and the hall bathroom bathtub in the effort to keep either one from getting too clogged. Ew. We also found that outdoor hoses make pretty good rinsers as well.

As far as what we consumed during this time, these were go-tos for us:

1. instant oatmeal
2. hard boiled eggs ('cause they need almost zero cleanup)
3. BBQ chicken or pork (cooked on the grill)
4. salad mix
5. Valley Fresh frozen vegetable steamers
6. frozen pizza
7. Bertolli frozen meals (I can't tell you how many of these we ate. I think I'm done with them for life.)

For lunch, Robert had his usual peanut butter and jelly and I tried to eat leftovers or sometimes Amy's frozen meals.

I'm so looking forward to actually cooking good, fresh food again—and to not using paper plates anymore (sorry, Mother Nature, I really do feel badly about that). But maybe we helped out the planet a little by not using as much electricity? At least half the outlets in and around our house don't work right now—a product of updating our electrical panels and moving around outlets to accommodate our new layout.

Well, I hope this little post was insightful. I actually did a rudimentary internet search for cooking/food tips from kitchen-less renovators when we first started this thing, but I didn't find much that was useful. One woman, I think it was in Elle or something, said she was looking forward to roasting a whole duck in her open brick fireplace during her kitchen renovation.

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