Tuesday, 3 January 2012

My Tiny Eclectic Kitchen

Many of my readers understandably have assumed that I have a mighty big kitchen, especially as I tend to cook from scratch a lot.  The fact is it is quite a small flat kitchen  Its about 6 foot by 6 foot.  When there are two people in the kitchen, it’s a bit of a squeeze shall we say. There have been many times, when I have been frustrated by the lack of space and its restrictions.  D has understood many of my frustrations and has done his utmost to make the kitchen space as functional as it could be. He utilised the space - height wise, so that I've been able to store cooking pots and jars, although I do need a step ladder to reach these.  However even with all his efforts, there are indeed still limits that hinder the experimental cook in me.  I've never been able to bake large cakes, decorate them with fancy piping and then leave them on the side to look pretty, as they would take up the only available surface that is used for food preparation. Also I cannot display the gadgets that I have accumulated over the years, moreso use them - such as the food processor, hence the reason I end up making shortcrust pastry by hand often...well you get the point I am trying to make - its a tiny kitchen. 

In spite of its size and my grumbles, this cooking space has served us well over the years and I have come to appreciate its individuality.  I made this short video about of my eclectic kitchen about 3 months ago.  Since then I have had to remove some of the decour.  The food related artwork, as well as the dangling things, such as chilli lights that may look messy to potential home buyers, but for me they have made the kitchen quirky and personal.    
Still like many homely cooks, I dream of that big open space (or even a country kitchen), when I will be able to leave out my kitchen gadgets and actually be able to use them! Be able to share the joys of cooking and baking with others in the kitchen space, and be able to open the door to my kitchen garden and pick fresh herbs…Oh I dream of my of my own space.  Part of this 'dream' has begun, as the house we will be renting offers some of these opportunities to me.  But before I say 'goodbye to this tiny space' this year.  I have to remind myself that I have made some delicious diverse world vegetarian cuisines here.

Here are some recipes from my kitchen in 2011.  Enjoy.
 Of course, I have to begin with these Welsh Red Dragon Chilli Shortbread.
 February - A Scottish recipe that I will always keep close to me - Potato Scones.
 April - Wild Garlic Oatcakes
 May - A new challenge for me - making Banoffee Curd and White Chocolate Roulade
 June - Radish Leaf and Root Tart.
 July - Savoury Seitan Faux Roast 'Meat' (vegan)
August - Plum and Almond Tart with Plum Syrup
September - Creamy Cabbage Pie - Perfect for those rainy Scottish days!!!
October - Another new technique to me - Sweet Potato Wontons Stickers with Sweet Chilli Sauce - absolutely delicious.
 November - Beetroot and Gingerbread Muffins
And finally,  December - Date and Coconut Bars.

Oh I should also mention, that I will not be returning back to blustery gale force windy Scotland with D later in the week. I had applied for a job in Wales and guess what I have an interview next week. Sounds promising and it may be a welcome start to the new year, so I have made the decision to stay behind. First for the interview, second for the outcome.  If all goes well, then it will be 'ready set go' for moving, if not...well I will blog about that later.  Anyway, whatever happens, You will have to forgive me in advance as there may be very little in the way of proper foodie (and growing) blogging until mid to late February.  So instead I thought that I would begin sharing with you some things from my kitchen - starting of course with the kitchen itself. 

38 comments:

  1. When I first read the title of this post, I read it as "My Tiny Electric Kitchen", which is not the same thing at all!
    I love your Year in Recipes sequence. It just emphasises the diversity of your repertoire.
    Just keep buying those Lottery tickets, and one day you might be lucky enough to have as much kitchen space as you want!

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  2. Being totally gobsmacked that my previous comment actually appeared - no idea what I'm doing right - I'm at it again. There are gale force winds battering my windows, it's tipping it down, I'm cold, my oven isn't working properly and I am gaining such a lot of comfort from your wonderful recipes and reading your previous blogs. I am planning all the things I am going to cook in my ropey kitchen. I wish you every luck with your interview and hope the outcome is what you want it to be.

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  3. Dear Shaheen,

    Wish you a very Happy New Year ahead and all the best for the upcoming changes this year.

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  4. Wow.....this could be a brilliant start to your New Year. I have my fingers firmly crossed for you.

    My only tip for the interview, don't seem to desperate for the job, relax and treat this as potentially the first interview of many in Wales and just a dress rehearsal, enjoy the experience. This comes from someone who used to interview folk on a regular basis. You most likely know all this but I thought I'd pass the tips on anyway. Good Luck.

    Sue xx

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  5. doubly chuffed for you on the spacious kitchen and job front :o)
    All the best with the latter and enjoy settling into the former (you'll be in your element!)

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  6. Best of luck with the job interview, Shaheen. Fingers crossed on your behalf!

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  7. Lovely post. Good luck with the interview. I hope you get the job even though I shall be so sad that you are leaving Scotland. xx

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  8. Dear Shaheen: I love your little kitchen and I have to say that mine is so tiny too! I'm so glad for the good news, this year looks promissing!

    Love

    Verónica

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  9. You may not believe this, but I lived in an apartment many years ago with a kitchen that was no more than 4x4. Somehow a person makes do.

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  10. Best of luck with your interview! I liked seeing your kitchen--mine is small, as well. I can't wait to own a house someday! :-)

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  11. Good to see your kitchen Shaheen. You've got some lovely posters and pictures. I too have a small kitchen and it is SO frustrating not having room to do the things I want to do and having nowhere to put anything. But more than all this I regret not having a friendly kitchen where others can join me, sit down, have a cup of tea. You know what I mean. It sounds wonderful that you are going to get a bigger kitchen - wishing you the very best of luck with it.

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  12. Well, after my initial success this is now the third attempt at posting a comment. I am sure I am doing what I did the first time!!! Very perplexing. I wanted to wish you good luck with your interview. I hope it all turns out the way you wish it too. Life has been a bit difficult for so many these past few years that it would be nice to see someones circumstances improving and life becoming what they wish them to be.

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  13. I love your kitchen but I am very glad to hear that you will have some of your dream kitchen soon and wonderful news about the job interview. I am crossing every finger and toe for you. They will be fools if they don't employ you. Best of Luck Shaheen, with the job and the move, xxx

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  14. It is amazing how much stuff you can fit into a small space.

    Good Luck with the interview.

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  15. Good luck with everything! I am thrilled for you to have a big yummy kitchen, what a treat!

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  16. Hi Shaheen,
    Wow-can’t believe all those fantastic dishes were made in your ‘bijoux’ kitchen! All the very best for the job interview and hopefully your move to South Wales will go smoothly! Now back to looking at all your tempting recipes...

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  17. Wow, I can't believe all that tasty looking food came out of that tiny space. You sure have it well organised, it looks like an aladins cave!!

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  18. You certainly have cooked up some treats there, I don't know how you do it. I only know that the more space I have the more I fill it! I cooked your kale cheese potato pasties yesterday and they are fab - thankyou!
    All the best for your interview x

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  19. my kitchen is even tinier ): but definitely not sth to stop me from cooking! great recipe ideas! loving the beetroot gingerbread muffins and the creamy cabbage pie with that adorable umbrella crust! hope the interview goes well (:

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  20. Hello Shaheen

    I've been reading your blog for a while now - husband and I are not vegetarians, but do grow our own and are now following a more veggie-based diet, due to various health issues. You do the most incredibly delicious looking things with veg, pulses and fruit (and make wonderful pies with innovative pastry ideas and lovely fillings), for which I thank you. I hope you get the job and that you are able to move back to Wales. Whatever happens, I hope you will continue blogging your lovely food ideas when you can.

    Regards, Sooze

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  21. So glad you left us some fun things to look at and explore while you're gone. Best wishes for your interview.

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  22. Thanks for the look around of your wee kitchen.

    Good luck with the job interview!

    Sandie xx

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  23. Good luck for the interview :)

    It's rather a relief to hear that you can make such wonderful creations (great round up) in a small kitchen. Mind is also on the small side and clearly I can't use that as an excuse for not producing worthy dishes! I love your use of space, I think I need to think along those lines more and more.

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  24. The size of your kitchen has not impaired your cooking one bit. Good luck with the interview. Looking forward to your blog in the future.

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  25. What a great wrap - up of your blogging year. Naturally I want to eat all of it immediately (and I just had dinner....). Its funny how sentimental you can get about a space isn't it - even if half the time you curse different aspects of it. Hope the interview goes well!

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  26. YOu have done well! I also have gadgets that I never use because there is no-where handy to store them - I still use a balloon whisk for cream, would you believe?

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  27. Your tiny eclectic kitchen is absolutely adorable, and alive. This is what I love the most!

    Wish you plenty of fabulous dishes, with friends or quiet alone, in your new one.

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  28. Astounding the wonderful food that was prepared and came out of your charming but limited space kitchen. Bravo!! Loved the photo essay, truly some of your best. Good luck Shaheen..a new page awaits.

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  29. This is now my fourth attempt at leaving another message. I have no idea what I am doing wrong. Anyway, I hope you recieve it. It was nice to hear from you, thank you for your comments. I just wanted to wish you the best of luck with your interview. I hope it all works out for you in the way you wish it to. Job, kitchen and garden wise. I understand those longings. Best of luck.

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  30. Oh, good luck with your interview, and with everything, I soooo wish it goes well for you!

    I love your little kitchen, especially your chicken potholder thingy! I have a vegan wall chart too! We have a very small kitchen in our new house, compared with the old one, I have been known to get a bit Gordon Ramsey-ish when people are in my way in there...there just isn't the space.. very frustrating!

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  31. Oh my goodness, I thought OUR kitchen was small. I'm so impressed by what you've done with such a tiny space!

    Wishing you a very happy new year and a very large kitchen in your new home! Though I'm sure you'll sometimes miss the coziness...=)

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  32. Happy New Year Shaheen,I just know it's going to be a great one. Love your little kitchen It has so much in it. Mine is smaller and in the shape of an L I guess you'd call it a galley. However I do have the herb garden out the side door and that makes up for the lack of space.Running a business from such a small space does keep me organized Heaven only knows how messy it might be if I had more space.

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  33. Hi!Thanks for visiting me, I really like your pùblog, since the seasonal vegetables are so much important to me, as the other ingredients I use in my recipes!I love the older posts you shown us, thanks for all the ideas!Ciao!Meggy

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  34. good luck with the interview - lovely idea for keeping us entertained while you aren't able to spend as much time in the kitchen - I don't think kitchens are just about space but about what they produce and how homely they feel - yours is hugely successful on both counts - I know people with huge kitchens who don't use them that much and it always seems a shame - and I love your 2011 list - so much good food

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  35. Good luck with the job interview in Wales! I will keep my finger's crossed for you! Great for you!

    We will be waiting when you will be getting back to your lovely blog but for now, we will miss you! I am going to check out these lovely favourite recipes from 2011 right now!

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  36. ah but it's a cute wee kitchen anyway, <3 that you have so much artwork in there:)

    and that's great new, the interview, i am SO SO SO keeping my fingers crossed for you!!!

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  37. What a sweet little video of a sweet little kitchen. It is so obvious you love spending a lot of time in it.

    Good luck.

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