I would enjoy cooking and meal prep a lot more if Dave and I could both eat whatever we wanted without risky health consequences.
And if we had a decent kitchen.
Now, far be it for me to start of 2021 complaining, but I have every reason to, as you’ll soon discover;
Despite having to wear masks and social distance and all that jazz, I still enjoy grocery shopping. I befriend the employees and enjoy talking to them. I like trying new products, especially if I have a coupon.
In 34 years of marriage, I have developed a post-shopping system. The most time-consuming part is prepping ground meat (preferably turkey breast) in an electric skillet whilst simultaneously steaming kale and/or spinach. While the steamed veggies cool, I drain the browned meat into a colander positioned over an old quart-sized Tupperware liquid measuring cup.
Here’s where my frustration comes in;
I have NO counter space. Admittedly, I WOULD have SOME, were I not the disorganized slob that I am. But that’s not entirely my fault because my kitchen is horrendously designed.
There’s a lot of wasted space that is too small to serve any purpose other than to rest a folding step-stool in. On either side of my sink jut ancient Formica “countertops” as narrow as 3.5 inches. The remaining 50 inches of counter space is too low and not at an ergonomically proper height. Additional counter space (and cupboards) can be found in the dining room, but it’s awkward to have to go back and forth between the kitchen and the dining room for food prep. The only decent height is the stovetop, so I often place a cutting board on top and do any chopping there.
With that image set up, picture it; Here I am, standing with the colander in the sink, balanced over the 1-quart measuring cup. Experience has taught me that this is the most advantageous way to drain meat.
Carefully I poise the meat-filled skillet over the colander and gently spoon out the browned turkey breast.
But then it happens; a large chunk of browned meat falls out of the skillet, upsetting the half-filled colander. A good portion of meat falls into the sink, ruined. Not only that, but watery turkey juice (at least it’s not hamburger grease!) splashes onto the 3.5 inch “counter top).
That’s when I scream, for the kajillionth time in the 30 years we’ve lived in this house, I HATE THIS KITCHEN!
Salvaging what meat I can, I now have to place my food processor on the dining room table (because, you know, I have no counter space) and proceed to puree the steamed veggies. While the meat cools I bag it up along with a cup or so of pureed veggies, in about 6 or 7 individual freezer bags. After that, it’s clean-up time. There’s no room for a dishwasher in this poorly-designed kitchen, so I wash the dishes in phases by hand.
I hear you ask, so why don’t you remodel? My reply is, I think it’s hopeless.It would have to be completely gutted and re-designed and that would be just too much trouble. I’ve lived with it for 30 years and as long as I can let out my frustrations once in awhile, I can tolerate this stupidly-designed excuse for a kitchen.
So if in the distance you hear a woman scream in anguish about how she hates her kitchen, it’s probably me after a bowl of spaghetti has fallen off a counter top that’s only 3.5 inches wide!