Our next step is all about cooking and feeling happy about it.
What, you say? Isn’t cooking fun? Lots of people cook as a hobby and really enjoy it! Cooking real food everyday is bound be be a real joy!
Well, I hate to be a downer but cooking isn’t always fun. And it’s best to talk about that right upfront. Sure, cooking a special meal on a lazy day for people that are eager to eat it is fun. But imagine instead that you are cooking daily for a picky toddler, a harried spouse who is used to restaurant meals or fast food. Imagine further that your day is booked, totally booked. So you arrive home toddler in tow right at the witching hour when toddlers are happy about exactly nothing … they just want to eat! Then imagine that the sink is stacked with dishes from last night and the kitchen in general is a mess. Your spouse arrives home starving and suggests you just order something quick. What will you do?
Most of us don’t have to work very hard to picture this situation because we are living this situation! In the beginning it will be tough to choose to cook and the cleanliness of the kitchen will be a big psychological factor in the choice you make. It’s very hard to walk into a dirty kitchen, clean up the mess and then cook. If inspiration hit you by the time the dishes are done it’ll be long past.
Suppose that instead of leaving the cleanup for later you decide to do it right after dinner? That sounds a lot better, and it is. But if you must return to a kitchen that looks like a bomb went off after you eat your dinner just how good will you feel while cooking that dinner? Or while eating that dinner? You’ll become very susceptible to believing it’s just not worth it.
So we clean as we go
Cleaning up as you cook takes very little time really. Cooking has a surprising amount of time spent waiting for things to happen. If you take advantage of this time you can get a shocking amount of cleaning done.
So we’ll start out with one simple clean-as-you-go step, loading the dishwasher as you go the next time you make a meal. This will keep things out of the way as you work making cooking easier. And you’ll have the bonus of returning to a mostly clean kitchen after you eat! Those without a dishwasher aren’t off the hook. I’ve got a step for you too. There have been times I haven’t had one in my kitchen as well.
Do this if you have a dishwasher …
- When you first step into the kitchen to cook, check the dishwasher. If it’s full of clean dishes, unload them and put them away before you begin.
- As you’re cooking if you use a tool that you know you won’t need again put it in the dishwasher while you wait for the onions to fry, the meat to brown, the soup to boil, etc …
And if you don’t have a dishwasher …
- When you first step into the kitchen to cook empty the sink and fill it with warm soapy water.
- As you’re cooking if you use a tool that you know you won’t need again swish it in the soapy water, rinse and set aside to dry. Do this while you’re waiting for the water to boil or the timer to go off. If there are more things than you can get to during that time simply set them next to the sink.
If you drip something, wipe it up right away. Then when you are finished cooking take a moment to survey the kitchen. Amazing isn’t it! It just doesn’t seem like these simple steps could yield such big results! But it does. Now when you walk into the kitchen after eating it’s most of the way toward being clean. A few minutes is all it will take to get it ready for the next time. Having your kitchen mostly clean and ready to use at all times is very inspirational.
This week we are:
- Step 1 – Making buttered veggies every night.
- Step 2 – Making a simple main dish two nights a week.
- Step 3 – Clean up the kitchen as you go.
This week we’ll have three steps under our belt … it’s gonna feel great!
Let us know how it’s going in the comment section below. Are you finding your kitchen cleaner without much extra effort? What will you make as your second main dish? Share your ideas with us!
Just Getting Started?
This post is part of a series. It’s important to start with the first post and work your way thru step by step. If you’d like to get a general overview of where we’re going with “The Granny Plan” you can subscribe to my blog post update list and you’ll be able to download “10 Steps to Cooking Like a Modern Day Granny”. We’ll be very loosely following the steps in that booklet, adding and taking away as it feels right. There are a few steps I plan to change up, but I’ll leave that as a surprise .
Links to the rest of the series:
- Getting Started
- Step 1: It All Starts With Buttered Carrots …
- Step 2: Our First Main Dish
- Step 3: Clean As You Go
- Step 4: Feed Yourself First
- Step 5: Eliminate One Fake Food
- Step 6: What Can I Improve in 15 Minutes?
- Step 7: Begin Work on a Real Food Project
- Step 8: Start Building a Real Food Pantry
- Step 9: Do You Have Kitchen Gaps?
- Step 10: List Your Routines
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This post is shared at Sunday School, Homestead Barnhop, Weekend Gourmet, Make Your Own Monday, Fat Tuesday, Traditional Tuesdays, The Gathering Spot, Hearth and Soul Blog Hop, TALU Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, Party Wave Wednesday, Works for Me Wednesday, Whole Foods Wednesday, Simple Lives Thursday, Tasty Traditions, Thank Your Body Thursday, Pennywise Platter, Fight Back Friday, Old Fashioned Friday, Fresh Bites Friday and Small Footprint Friday.