It’s Spring. The weather has started to change, the aroma of flowers is in the air and attitudes are improving for the better. Spring also is a traditional time for organizing your home. The annual writ of Spring Cleaning not only provides a more enjoyable home life, it also can help improve your mood, decrease stress levels and enhance creativity, claims Psychology Today magazine.
An organized kitchen can make meal preparation more enjoyable and could help improve the quality of meals. Domino magazine asked organizing expert and Keep This Toss That author Jamie Novak for decluttering kitchen advice. Novak’s guidance for organizing your kitchen is as follows:

Measuring Cups and Spoons
Stock your kitchen with:
• One set of dry cups (preferably those that nest together for storage)
• One liquid 2-cup measuring cup
• One set of stainless steel measuring spoons
Donate any additional measuring spoons or cups that you have.
Pots and Pans
Every kitchen needs one of each of the following essential pots and pans:
• 10-quart stockpot with lid for boiling pasta or steaming vegetables
• 3-quart sauté pan with lid for searing meats
• 2-quart saucepan for reheating food, making sauces and general cooking
• 9” by 13” baking pan for roasting chickens and baking cakes
Novak believes any additional pots and pans are unnecessary.

Knives
You only need three:
◦ 8-inch chef’s knife
◦ 3-inch paring knife
◦ 10-inch serrated knife

Kitchen Shears
Kitchen shears are a cook’s best friend. They can be used for slicing pitas, mincing herbs, trimming piecrusts and snipping beans and snow peas. They can also be used to open stubborn food packaging.

Peelers
You need two – a Y-shaped peeler for large jobs and a swivel blade for smaller items.

Dishes
If you have more than two sets of dishes, you have too many sets.

Potholders and Dishtowels
You need just one set of silicone potholders, and when it comes to dish towels, seven is the magic number. And remember, when you use dishtowels you make a contribution to the environment by cutting down on use of paper towels.

Spices
Bon Appetite magazine identified 24 essential spices for any kitchen. To help unclutter your spice drawer, consider investing in an attractive storage container. Throw out any ground spices that have been in your spice drawer or rack for more than six months and whole spices that are a year or older because they are past their prime.

Things to Eliminate
• Metal tongs because they can easily scratch pots and pans, which can make them unsanitary. Instead use silicone or rubber-tipped tongs.
• Scratched or warped pots and pans.
• Dull or rusted knives.
• Stained or chipped mugs and drinking glasses
• Deli containers
• Condiments that you get with take out food such as soy sauce, mayo, mustard, duck sauce, etc. They take up space in the fridge, they offer little benefit and are rarely used.
Things to Donate
• Pots or pans that don’t fit your burners.
• Small appliances that you only use once a year. How much space does that sandwich press take up in a cabinet? When was the last time you made ice cream waffles or fresh pasta?
• Mini specialty baking pans that are used less than once a year.
• Souvenir plastic cups you have acquired from your travels or that you thought were a good idea at the time of purchase.
• Travel coffee mugs that exceed the number of coffee drinkers in your home.
• Water bottles that exceed the number of water drinkers in your home.
• Glassware that is used less than once a year.

We can help organize your kitchen by recommending the latest storage devices available on the market. Give us a call at (610) 262-7235 or visit us on line at www.directkitchen.com so you can enjoy Spring, reduce your stress and enhance your creativity in the kitchen and beyond. Click here for a related post.