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Oct 12, 2011 10:13 AM

Do you have to "like" your kitchen in order to be inspired to cook?

I'm temporarily living in one of my rental properties due to "circumstances". The kitchen here is cramped, and outdated. I left a beautiful kitchen that I painstakingly designed myself to this space. One saving grace is that I transported my Wolf range from my main residence to here (not an easy feat). When called upon I can produce very nice meals (I'm a chef by trade) but because I dislike my surroundings it's not enjoyable. Would this effect your psyche too?

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  1. One's surroundings can affect your mood. My kitchen is in need of a total makeover, but the view out the window is great, and when I compare it to those folks that are living in a shelter or a tent (not by their choice), I feel quite blessed. When I am feeling like I don't have a beautiful "enough" home or kitchen, I just put myself on a world scale, not the scale of friends or relatives.
    Maybe a fresh coat of paint will help. Maybe the "circumstance" has affected your feelings?

    3 Replies
    1. re: wyogal

      Wyogal, you have great attitude. :-)

        1. You're spoiled. It's cramped and outdated but was good enough for your renters. It's cramped and outdated but you have a wolf range.

          A tiny kitchen or no counter space is definitely a challenge, but the most important thing to me is the range, I don't really care how old the fridge is as long as its cold or how beautiful the surfaces are as long as they are clean. Sounds like you miss your old kitchen and maybe resent the circumstances that took you away from it? Adjustment is hard, but you will pull through.

          Wyogal is right, a can of paint can really help, is cheap, and gives you the satisfaction of a relatively quick and easy transformation. With less space you may have to cook simpler meals, but you can still focus on really great ingredients or nice winter soups and braises and baking that let you use that Wolf as much as possible. Good luck.

          1. Well, frankly, since you asked, I'm going in the "spoiled" column. I've cooked in grand kitchens and those that are not so grand. In fact, the kitchen in my house is probably the worst room in the place. Like yours, it's small and pretty out of date. Nevertheless, the ingredients and tools I use are what's important to me and therefore the sources of inspiration and pleasure. As suggested, maybe a step back, deep breath, and acknowledgment of what you do have (that stove for example) would help.

            1. I have cooked in great kitchens and terrible kitchens--some with terrible equipment to boot. Sure it can be more difficult, but I'm kind of a pollyanna about things so I would just live with the circumstances and make the best of it. Life is imperfect.

              1. I'm with the posters who think it might be the entire circumstance in which you find yourself that's coloring your attitude toward cooking in your temporary kitchen. I think with a change of perspective, you could find some different satisfaction in producing extraordinary food in a less than extraordinary kitchen. :)