~Guest post from Pamela Nevarez-Fisher~
Being a chef for the last thirty years, (OMG!…has it been THAT long??) has taught me alot about being organized! I have worked in small kitchnens, large kitchens, clean kitchens, dirty kitchens….you name it! But, the absolute best kitchen is, no doubt, an organized one.
While there is alot to be said about working in a small space, it’s certainly not any good unless you know where to find things. I always preferred small kitchens, because things could be done within an arm’s reach. Below the prep and cold station, small, uniform containers (no lids on during service) containing ‘mis en place’ can be easily reached, then a quick turn to the stove, and you can be sauteeing in an instant! Mis en place is French for ‘things in place’. Your ‘mis en place’ are your perfectly diced vegetables that will be used in the entrees you prepare for the evening. No one knows more about kitchen efficiency than the French!
As a personal chef, preparing meals for families and individuals with special dietary needs, I now store food in individual containers, rather than large 1 – 5 gallon ones. In my kitchen space, I’ve converted a small coat closet to one with shelves for storing all of my containers. I used to have many, many different sizes, but steamlined to only 3 – 4 sizes to keep things neat and in order. Now, when I need to hire extra help at EatStreet, they can very easily find the container AND the lid without having an anxiety attack or spending a half hour trying to match things up! I love it!
Thank you Pamela!