Alice loved the food her neighbour Gracy cooked. She used to lick it off and often asked the recipe for the same. One fine day, Alice insisted Gracy to see the process of cooking to understand everything better. Gracy resisted but Alice entered her kitchen. To the latter’s surprise, Gracy’s kitchen was a mess. It was not dirty, but unhealthy in many ways. Alice did not comment anything but henceforth, she was wary of eating anything that came from Gracy’s kitchen after that.
Kitchen is a sacred place for me. It should be clean as the health of the entire family is cooked here. Let the smell of freshly prepared pasta sauce waft through the house and entice everyone to have a spoonful as soon as it is prepared. Let your love for cooking revealed in the health of your spouse and kids. All this is possible when a kitchen is a positive place – a clean, happy and healthy one.
Now, there are different types of clean freaks. What is weekly cleanliness for me might be just a daily chore for you. Hence, I would not be asking you to be obsessive about cleaning here. This post will instead reveal the benefits of a spotless kitchen and how you can go about it. I am quite a relaxed mom, thanks to my toddler. Instead of jumping to wipe a few drops of water on the floor, I let them dry on their own. I focus on cleaning a part of the home daily rather than indulge in Ninja cleaning.
1. Save Some Money
I was quite lazy earlier. My entire focus was on handling a toddler and reducing post-pregnancy weight. I used to let things be – even when they were rotting! I realized that this habit was weighing down on my love for cooking. Changing one habit at a time made me realize that it is quite easy to keep things in order. I also involved my toddler in this. Keeping kitchen neatly arranged is not that tough at all. I had many options for dinner as I had everything in order. What surprised me that I began cooking on the order of my little girl – I had an organized pantry, refrigerator brimming with veggies and a fresh kitchen every time I entered it! This helped me save money – no veggies rotting, no extra food in the pantry, no decay in the refrigerator, etc.
Handy Tip: Do it now. As soon as you find something rotting, discard it.
2. Get Time on Hand
Saving time, at times, turns into a vicious cycle (so you think). However, this is not true. You just had dinner and are pretty tired. You lie down on the couch, promising yourself that you will clean the countertop after 15minutes. But you are not able to get up and retire to bed. You keep the kitchen as it is. When you wake up in the morning, it takes you an hour to clean the kitchen that would have taken just 15 minutes in the evening. The gravy that jumped off the work has dried up, the grease has built up on the utensils and seeing this scene has already sapped your energy. All this leads to a late breakfast in the morning. On top of that, even the kitchen was not cleaned completely. The good habit is to execute tasks as and when they arise. As soon as you finish your dinner, you can stack the dishes to be cleaned, wipe off the countertop and clean the sponge. You might want to spend some time with family post dinner and executing these chores will cut down a few minutes of family time. However, if you do this regularly, you will be a pro in keeping the kitchen clean post dinner. And on the weekend, you will not need to waste time in ninja cleaning, but can spend it instead with the family. It even keeps anxiety at bay and helps in preparing for the meals.
Handy Tip: Cleaning kitchen post dinner is an easy way to burn off calories!
3. Keep your Family Safe
Kitchen is a place where there is fire, electricity and even knives. How can we possibly feel safe here if these things are not kept properly? If you have read newspapers diligently every day, you might realize that there are many news-stories on kitchen accidents. Hence, it is required that kitchen is kept organized and safe. This means that clean oil spills immediately. Prevent instances of fire by taking caution. With this, even when your toddler enters the kitchen, you can be rest assured of his safety. When not in use, keep kitchen appliances like oven, microwave, food processor, etc. unplugged. Keep the wires neatly wind up to prevent tangling. Stack all the sharp objects in a box out of reach of children. Make sure that an organized kitchen is also safe.
Handy Tip: Check all the appliances when you exit the kitchen.
4. Prevent Infestation of Germs
Get in the habit of reading the labels on the packages. Discard those that have expired. Things that will expire soon need to be arranged first in the line. If you are not going to use it in near future, donate it or throw it away. Clean the refrigerator regularly. Do not refrigerate foods for a longer duration, especially those that you are not going to consume in the course of time. This way, you will prevent building up of bacteria in the food items. As soon as you stock on grocery, arrange it in the order of usage. This will help you in many ways. Keep a track of everything that is present in your kitchen. Take rounds of every section in the pantry to be aware of things that needs attention. Make sure to use the food long before the expiry date. Do not wait to consume it a minute before it expires.
Handy Tip: Cleaning spills as and when they occur will save food in your kitchen from insect invasion.
5. Increase the Efficiency of Kitchen Gadgets
In the present age, gadgets are the lifeline of our routine. And when it comes to kitchen, it is difficult for me to even imagine my life without kitchen appliances. Right from food processor to convection oven, everything should be in place for me to work efficiently. Now picture this. You are in need of that hand blender but it refuses to work. This makes you remember that you forgot to clean it properly last time. Cleanliness results in efficiency – your appliances will work smoothly when they are maintained. You might also be aware of the hassles that you will have to go through for getting appliances repaired.
Handy Tip: Wipe or wash your kitchen appliances as soon as you are done using them.
6. Avert Infections in Your Home
This is a well-known fact that spoiled food leads to infections and illnesses. When you ignore something getting spoiled in your kitchen, you even overlook signs of contamination. As most of the things being edible, contamination can transmit from one food to other quite quickly. Before you know it, that infested rice has spoiled pulses and legumes that were kept close together. There are different precautions that you need to follow when you enter the kitchen. For instance, wash your hands every time you begin working. Clean the countertop after every use. Segregate food in the pantry based on their category. Simple habits can save you from major foodborne illnesses. Prevent cases of food poisoning in your household by keeping the kitchen clean and healthy.
Handy Tip: Dump the spoiled food when you find it – be it vegetables, fruits or even sweets or sauces.
7. Welcome Guests in the Kitchen
When the kitchen is spotless, you will not be embarrassed to invite guests in the kitchen while you are preparing meals. When friends and family come over your place, you rush to kitchen to prepare something for them. Guests would like to chat with you and hence, they enter the kitchen for conversation. We understand that while preparing food, the kitchen is somewhat messy – but it should not look like warfare. Take for instance, spilled milk in a corner, a dripping tap, cockroaches peeking out of the jars, etc. The guests probably make an excuse that she is fasting for not eating food from such a kitchen. Oh! There can be days when everything went wrong. But, do not make this a regular habit. I have an open kitchen that can be viewed from the living room itself. I have to keep it clean, even for family members or else they will stop eating food.
Handy Tip: Do the meal preparations in advance and clean the kitchen once before guests arrive.
8. Less Consumption of Power
With limited energy or power available, it is necessary that we use it judiciously. This means you will need to have a smart kitchen. Your kitchen should be an efficient place. While cooking, use fire or electricity cleverly. Select right woks and pans for cooking – depending on the quantity and the type of meal you are cooking. Planning ahead for preparing meals saves both time and energy. Use the leftovers smartly. Maintain your refrigerator on a regular basis. If there are dripping taps, fix them immediately. Do not keep spoiled dishes for long; it takes more water and energy to clean them. Clean the convection after use. An energy efficient kitchen will not only save you money but also ensure that you are able to give quick and healthy meals to your family.
Handy Tip: Invest in energy efficient appliances and cookware.
9. Show your Gratitude to Nature
Keep your kitchen not only clean but green as well by going eco-friendly. While you might like to use that new kitchen cleaner that does the work in minutes, you might not be aware of its harmful components and the effects. Using chemical laden products in your kitchen will eventually affect the health of your family. While choosing cleaning products, you need to check the label carefully and stay away from chemicals. This way, you do not only assure a healthy home, but also ensure a clean and green environment in general. You can also resort to things in your kitchen itself for cleaning. The good old lemon and vinegar are as good as other ready-to-use cleaning products available on the shelves. With so many illnesses related to toxins prevalent these days, it is necessary that you keep a distance from them.
10. Build Good Vibes in the Kitchen
You will not disagree when I say that a clean kitchen keeps your mood upbeat. You feel like cooking in a hygienic and happy kitchen. When you enter a kitchen that is spotless, you feel invited to create magic with your food – to give nutrition to your family. As opposed to this, when you enter the kitchen and find spoiled dishes, you are disappointed and this creates a ripple effect – a negative one. Focus on building positive vibes in the kitchen. When you think of good things while preparing food, the same energy is transferred to your family.
Handy Tip: Do not cook food when you are angry or irritated.
11. Keep Anxieties at Bay
Have you ever felt that clutter in your home often results in anxieties and tensions? You might even notice that clutter leads to arguments and discomfort. This is true even for the kitchen. Kitchen is the heart of your home. If this place is not kept clean, you will not be able to keep your mind calm. A clean kitchen helps you take decisions quickly, especially related to preparation of meals. Relaxing atmosphere in the kitchen creates positive ambiance in the entire household.
Handy Tip: Make your kitchen smell good for positive energy. You can even burn incense sticks or boil cinnamon or orange peels for this.
12. Become an Inspiration for Others
When your kitchen is arranged and clean, it sends out good signals to the family members. They would like to lend a helping hand to you in your chores. What more! You can inspire your husband to dish up a meal for you. Even your kids can learn cooking in a place that is easy to operate and where things are available, without much hassle. Label the jars to make it convenient for others to cook. Let everyone in the family express their culinary skills in your kitchen.
Handy Tip: Arrange the things in the kitchen in such a way that they can be spotted even by guests.
Kitchen is the sacrosanct of the entire household – it is like a temple. There are so many benefits of maintaining your kitchen – it looks good, feels good and stands as a living inspiration to your family. Just a wipe here and a sponge there will make your kitchen smile and you happy. So, what are you waiting for – that spatula needs to be kept properly. Just kidding! Happy cleaning!