The kitchen flow

Joined Dec 7, 2009
I was on a big knife thing last week, I was young and it was summer.

Now I realize the very top priority to running a good kitchen is having all the items you need in the most efficient location, know where they are, what they are, how many are there, how many might be needed later; storage jars, ingredients the list goes on and on.

Have a good flowing kitchen can make or break a nice dinner engagement.

For me personally the ergonomics or reaching an extra 6 inches NS east or West over and over is just maddening. I my small little humble kitchen I can really haul if I get everything jam-up-jelly tight (no offense if a google shows this to be an offensive term) just off the top.

In my dream kitchen everything would be about 4 feet higher and there would be no stooping. I often work in a rolling office chair and would like to mount the refrigerator on a base to lift if up a full foot if I good. Nowhere is efficiency more important than in a well run kitchen or for that matter a doctors office or a fine mechanics garage.

As a sub-topic if anyone has tips on how to bake a dish recipied @ 400 and another calling for 350 in the same oven I would be interested. I often want to accomplish that and I suppose some common sense might give some solutions, what can be cooked longer at a little lower temp would be a good question for one to ask oneself. In pondering this I was almost thinking of some physical device to create a lower temp area in the oven.

If you made it this far you might be my friend.:thumb:
Joined Feb 26, 2007
Slow down :) so, your sub topic...what are you trying to cook at 400 and 350 at one time? A quick idea would be to put the 350 at the bottom of the oven, covered with foil shiny side out, and the 400 item right up the top of the oven, uncovered if that's suitable. If there are 3 racks, put a cookie sheet just above the 350 item, this should shield it a bit from the heat. Set your oven for 380.

Really hard to give advice when we don't know what you are trying to cook. Or cook the 350 for less time in a 400 oven?
Joined Dec 7, 2009
Sorry to go too fast I have to work early and have alot to do but your help is good help.

It could be anything with no specifics and those ideas are great. I suppose a real good kitchen would have two ovens available but that is just a little too much.

I spend so much time cooking lately I need to move fast and have alot going at one time.
Joined Feb 1, 2007
DC, fwiw, according to the folks at Alcoa, shiny side in or out has no effect on how food cooks.

Yeah, yeah, I know. It seems to make sense that the shiny side would reflect more heat away. And many of us were brought up to believe that. But, apparently, it just ain't so.

Another bit of conventional wisdom deep sixed. :cry:
Joined Feb 26, 2007
Oh poop :D But then.....why does it have one dull side and one shiny?:confused:

Kevin, looks like you'll have to ignore my gem of wisdom about the foil :rolleyes:
Joined Feb 13, 2008
It's nice to have an organized pantry and "kitchen flow."

An awful lot of that is prep, and an awful lot of prep is board management and mise en place. Some equipment like sharp and appropriate knives, and whatever's necessary to wash food which needs to be washed are important too.

Knives must be properly stored, convenient and safe. Your sharpening system doesn't have to be "the best," but shouldn't be harmful. Otherwise, it's more important that it be convenient enough to get used.

Your board should be wood and as big as can possibly fit on your counter without sweeping appliances on to the floor. It's the heart of organization as you prep, just as your mise is as you cook. You'll need to figure out a place to stand it on edge while it dries after washing. Setting a board down damp, is a sure way to ruin it. I like boards without feet in order to use both sides, but feet stop you from putting a damp board on the counter.

Try and find the counter space to put a container holding your most commonly used small tools where you can reach them as you cook.

An orderly mind and mise, in that order, are the most important things.

Learn to do and use mise, and you'll bump your results several levels.

In the process of creating your mise, you'll learn how you use your ingredients, and inferentially how to organize your pantry, refrigerator, and sink area.

You don't need a lot of pots and pans, but you do need a well-chosen set of a quality good enough not to be an obstacle. Stack, hang or both -- it doesn't matter as long as you don't spend half a lifetime searching for what you need.

Knowing where things are and being able to find them is far more important than having them close.

Try and organize your kitchen and your equipment choices around who you actually are. Don't make resolutions you can't or won't keep.

Mise, mise, and mise,
Joined Jan 14, 2007
work in an office chair?? unless you had a need for it, that would seem to clutter up any form of flow??

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