Here are the 11 tips I teach during an hour-long presentation about working faster in your kitchen. These are just the tips and I will flesh out each of these in the future.
1. Cutting Board Stays Out on Counter. Cutting board should preferably be made of wood and at least 2-foot by 1-foot.
2. “Wash/Chop/Cook.” Create flow with “wash/chop/cook” design by placing cutting board between sink and stove.
3. Be Well-Stocked. Load your pantry, refrigerator and freezer with a complete stable list.
4. Cheap Sharp Knives. Knives don’t have to be expensive but they have to be sharp. Keep trying new knives until you find one that feels safe and comfortable.
5. Purge Tools and Gadgets. If you haven’t used it in 6 months, throw it away. If a fork or knife will do its job throw it away. Clutter robes you of time and peace.
6. Purge Pots and Pans. Keep a collection of workhorse pans and get rid of the ones that don’t work for you. All pots and pans should be oven-proof (no plastic handles).
7. Consider a Pot Rack. Get your pots high and within sight. Allow them to guide your meal planning. No one likes looking for pots in a dark corner cabinet.
8. Keep Spices, Oils and Utensils Within Reach. Keep the spices, oils and utensils you cook with every day out in your cooking zone and within a small reach. Mount spice racks and paper towel racks to free up precious counter top space.
9. Use a Garbage Bowl/Bag. Don’t waste time carrying your scraps and trash from your work area to the garbage can. Dump it in a bowl or bag to avoid wet floors and unnecessary steps.
10. Thaw “A” Protein. Not “The” Protein. Take a protein out of the freezer in the morning and give yourself permission to not know what it will be. Decide when you return home what you will cook. And relax!
11. The Toaster Oven is Your Friend. There is no shame in toaster oven cooking especially in Florida. It pre-heats fast and cooks evenly.