What constitutes a "cook's kitchen" ? (and a slight introduction)
Today, for some reason completely unknown to me, I have decided to de-lurk after five years of reading this forum! I've been meaning to post about my kitchen remodel for some time now, but I never seem to get up the steam to do it. It will require pictures and descriptions and floor plans and probably, some explanations!
My husband and I are renovating a 1910's farmhouse (it used to be a strawberry farm and a christmas tree farm). We have been renovating the kitchen and dining room (and the plumbing, and the electrical, and the roof, and the foundation, etc, etc) for over three years now. Garden web has, hands down, been the smartest, fastest, most concise source of info I have found. I had a kitchen designer in the beginning. You guys are better. Hands down.
Anyway, I was recently in the home of a lady who is a local farmer and caterer. Her kitchen was absolutely enchanting. It was, to me, a real cook's kitchen. I could have spent all day there just looking at everything. It was almost as sensory an experience as actually eating one of her meals.
Some of the highlights were: a huge Wolf range, and it was used looking and not shiny. A magical pantry where the shelves groaned with home canned pickles, jams, vegetables, fruit. The colorful jars looked more appealing to me than jewels... A little nook under the stairs where she had a small built in desk. There were stacks of cookbooks, and recipes tacked to the walls. There was a coffee maker that always had fresh coffee, it just seemed to magically appear. Her husband built this kitchen for her and he built the cabinets, but hadn't gotten around to putting the doors on yet. It was fascinating to see the contents exposed. It was like perusing the books in someone's library: you could tell as much about her from her cupboards as you could from her books. Spices, vinegars, oils, flours, sugars, teas coffees - everything told a story about the way she spent her days.
She would be shocked if she knew I was writing about her kitchen. To her it is rather small and somewhat humble. To me it epitomizes how cooking and food are at the heart of life for many of us.
I am a rabid home cook. I have been cooking since I was two and helped my dad make scrambled eggs in my footie pajamas on a chair pulled up to the stove. I am creating a kitchen that hopefully pays homage to the history of this house, and hopefully represents me, is an expression of me, the way hers is for her. I am hoping my kitchen will turn out to be a "cook's kitchen".
What is your idea of a cook's kitchen? Have you been in any that were memorable? How would you describe them? How would you describe their owners?