One of the things I was most excited about with moving into a flat with Stuart (other than finally moving in together after nearly six years!) was having my very own kitchen. I had had four years of kitchen sharing, sometimes with people I didn’t know, plus a year back at my parents’, so I was ready to have a space was just for the two of us. We still have a few more bits to get for the flat, and I’m sure over time mess and spare ingredients keep in, but for now it is feeling like a proper working kitchen.
We have an open-plan living area with an L-shaped kitchen. There’s not a lot of room, but the space works reasonably well, and our whole block has been newly refurbished. You might be able to see from some of the photos that we haven’t removed the stickers from our appliances yet!
Not photographed are the storage spaces -the crockery and cooking cupboards, under-the-sink-cupboard and drawers, but you can see almost all of these in the IGTV video linked here and at the bottom of the post. We added in extra shelves to make more use of our cupboard space, and found nooks to tuck spare bottles and drinks away. Quite a lot of items we already had, and the nearby Homesense has proved a useful, if rather tempting, place to grab anything else we’ve needed.
Living in the city centre without a car means whilst we don’t have a big supermarket nearby, we are lucky to have access to a variety of local businesses. Fruit and veg comes from either the organic stall that pops up at my uni on a Monday, or from the nearby undercover market, where there is also a zero waste shop for dried goods. We have two lovely bakeries for nicer breads as well. We’ve decided to do a monthly Ocado shop, but are also close to an Aldi and smaller supermarkets for quick stock ups. I’m hoping shopping this way will give us a balance between saving money, still having access to more niche products, and being able to support local businesses too. In a small kitchen, shopping little and often is useful, especially with shorter shelf life products.
We’ve tried to be quite clever with food storage, using boxes, drawers and shelves to make use of dead space, and incorporating wire baskets and crates for produce. There is even flour hiding under the vegetable crates! Items that we use often are kept either on the countertops or in easy grabbing distance to make cooking more efficient. Having items separated by type also helps, both in the fridge and cupboards.