A true Chef's kitchen

sushipup1March 21, 2014

I'm a fan of Kenji Lopez-Alt, a big fan. He started out as chef with America's Test Kitchen, then moved to position as Head Genius at Serious Eats. He's the one behind the Food Lab tests, from the Perfect Prime Rib to Chocolate Chip Cookies, step by step, demonstrating his MIT training.

So he posted pictures of his home food lab, where most of the magic originates.

Let this be a lesson to us all who have lusted after major appliances and acres of space. This is a TRUE chef's kitchen!

Here is a link that might be useful: Kenji's home Food Lab

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rococogurl

Well said sushipup.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 12:48PM
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feisty68

Thanks for posting - very charming "real" kitchen where *cooking* happens. I have a small kitchen and I am happy with that. My reno will give me more counterspace and light which will be much appreciated. I do all scratch meals and want my children to start joining me in the kitchen.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 12:58PM
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blfenton

Thanks for sharing. If Kenji doesn't need a spice drawer then neither do I.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 1:31PM
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Bellsmom

Loved it! Thank you.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 2:46PM
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Iowacommute

I love it when a chef has a kitchen like mine and absolutely giddy when we have the same stuff.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 3:17PM
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nosoccermom

Have you seen the other kitchens? Lots of oak cabinets, 4 burner ranges, cramped counters, messy cabinets, relatively small top freezer fridges....

Here is a link that might be useful: kitchen tours

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 3:31PM
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andreak100

True chef's kitchen or not, I love the idea of having the space we are gaining for our new kitchen. :)

Really great though to see how his kitchen is set up to create and realize that it's not all about the gadgets.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 4:13PM
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lori_inthenw_gw

I read this earlier today and had a lot of the same thoughts. "Wow, he keeps stuff in plastic boxes to pull out and doesn't complain about not having drawers." "Wow, his prep area is essentially the size of a single cutting board." "Wow, he has to keep his dogfood and booze in the same tiny cabinet."

But I bet a lot of great food comes out of that kitchen! So I can safely stop obsessing about the minutae now? Yes!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 5:17PM
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Texas_Gem

Just more proof that the cook makes the kitchen, not the other way around. :)

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 6:26PM
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Linelle

My booze and cat food also share a shelf.

This guy's stove is funkier than mine! As I told my KD (who is now my BD) yesterday, the only reason I'd replace my old stove is for cosmetic reasons. The beast does everything I ask of it.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 6:45PM
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Gooster

I'll be honest, I was grossed out by this: "frozen cat I had in my freezer for a few months before we could find a suitable burial ground".

There are still a lot of gadgets in that kitchen -- they are just packed in and spilling over. I went through the slide show -- there are things like a tortilla press and more than one type of mandoline shown. (My tortilla press is the back of my skillet -- but to be honest, the only pressing involved is usually just me pressing closed the resealable bag of pre-made local tortillas. ).

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 8:15PM
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canuckplayer

Isn't it funny that home cooks want large spaces and lots of storage and pro chefs have everything so crammed, I don't know how they find anything.
I don't think I could work in any of those kitchens. I don't think I'm organized enough. I'd spend 10 minutes looking for each item I'd need for a meal.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 8:55PM
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chesters_house_gw

I think what we're seeing here is less examples of chef's kitchens than apartment kitchens, mostly in NYC. Can a chef cook anywhere? Sure. Would that same person pick something a little more spacious, professional, and easier to organize if prices allowed?

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 9:11PM
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bpathome

I think the dog brush in the fridge grossed me out more than the cat...at least Fluffy's in a Baggie! And I don't think I'd eat anything that had been in that kind of freeZer for 2 years. But I did feel better about the organization of my fridge (better) and drawers (equal), and that my le creuset Dutch oven from Mom rests on a glass table around the corner with some nice, usable, pottery casseroles.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 9:14PM
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michoumonster

wow, interesting. though i must imagine he must shop for fresh food every day. all of his fridge is stocked with preserved food and seasonings!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 9:15PM
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robo (z6a)

I loved it! So charming and such a detailed tour! My aunt (4'9" and shrinking) liked all the organizing around the needs of fun-sized people.

I was totally wondering how he managed it -- until I saw the rack of gadgets in the dining room. All was explained!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 9:19PM
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itsallaboutthefood

I think many people who cook for a living can't afford the kinds of kitchens the TKO on this forum can afford. It's great that so many of them are able to make the kitchens they have work and that they even love them.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 10:09PM
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cookncarpenter

"Just more proof that the cook makes the kitchen, not the other way around. :)"
...My little 10'x10' kitchen is the neighborhood's envy when they stop by for a meal :)

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 11:12PM
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Texas_Gem

ctycdm: Some of the best meals I had came from the neighbor I had in our first house. A lower class neighborhood. Her kitchen was maybe 9x6 or 9x7, roughly the size of my new pantry. I don't know how she did it, but she hosted amazing parties almost every weekend it seemed. Her entire house was less than 1000 sq. ft. but still, she made amazing food and her guests were always happy.

I am blessed with the finances to afford an awesome kitchen and when I get caught up with all the minutiae of designing, I try to remember her and remember that it doesn't take a gourmet kitchen to produce gourmet food and it doesn't take a 5 star house to make your guests feel welcome.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 2:19AM
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debrak2008

linelle, I must ask what do you mean by your BD? I googled the acronym and found things I don't think you were referring to, LOL.

As for the kitchen I started to laugh. Breaks a lot of rules with the mw over the range. Non SS appliances. Not all drawers. It's a little to small for me as it would make me feel like I was locked in a closet but as long as it works for him.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 1:12PM
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ChristyMcK

I want my job title to be 'Head Genius'. Fun kitchen to look at.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 3:05PM
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beachlily z9a

I've been in many restaurant kitchens that are much smaller than my own. My kitchen is 9x11 and works like a really big place! When our restaurant friend came over for something I had baked for him, he looked at my kitchen in awe. He's from Italy and has cooked all his life. Wonderful chef!!! Anyway, he complimented me on my organizational skills. Room in the fridge dominated by BIG chunks of chocolate and fresh veggies. Freezer dominated by 5 different kinds of flour and frozen croissants from BJ's. Gotta live, right??

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 4:18PM
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