Come behind the scenes at Only Gluten Free Recipes for a #KitchenTour and see Kristina's kitchen in West Vancouver, British Columbia.
My kitchen is where I spend most of my day, so for me, it is essential to have natural light and a lot of counter space. My island is 8' x 4' which creates a beautiful center stage for my meals and my kitchen is filled with natural light
Tell us about your kitchen?
When we bought our place, I have renovated the kitchen to my specifications. I wanted to have an open plan home for easy entertaining which includes a warm and cozy kitchen but still keeping it fairly contemporary. My cabinets are made from cherry wood, and I have added some glass doors to display my antique crystal. The countertops are made from Italian granite, and all the floors are made from beautiful taupe travertine stone. My 48" Monogram Gas Professional range takes over a big part of the kitchen. It includes two ovens, six gas burners and a grill, all of which are well used. I have also added a large pantry off my kitchen where I keep a small freezer and bar fridge. The pantry has built in shelving for my ingredients, props and unique dishes that I use for photography. Just outside the kitchen window, I have a herb garden which includes oregano, thyme, rosemary, sage, parsley, cilantro, bay leaves, basil, mint, chives and dill. I use a lot of fresh herbs in my recipes so having a herb garden is important to me. At the end of the summer season, I always dry my herbs for later use
What have you done to make your kitchen cosy, functional, beautiful or inspiring?
When I renovated the kitchen, I made sure to have plenty of space between the cabinets and the island. This is important because when I entertain, it seems that everyone gathers in the kitchen. So it is nice to have that extra room for everyone to move around without getting in each other's way. But it is the amazing west coast ocean view that I have from my picture window in the kitchen that truly sets this kitchen apart from most. I love to sit by the window and write because the view inspires me and also produces a lot of natural light which is essential for my photography. All the photography that I do is done with natural lighting
How do you keep organized while cooking?
Being organized in my kitchen is a must! Honestly, I can't think when I am disorganized. Once I decide on a recipe, the first thing I do is place all the ingredients on my kitchen island. When you look at my recipes, the ingredients are all prepped before you get to the instructions. I find this is much easier and less confusing. So for me first I cut, chop, measure and then just put everything together. I also clean while I cook, so by the time I am finished there is nothing to clean up. This is why I need two dishwashers!
Any tips & tricks for organising your pantry, fridge and ingredients?
When it comes to organizing my pantry I have four sections. My herbs and spices, then my various flours, starches, baking powder, then dried ingredients such as lentils, chickpeas and beans, and lastly all my oils, various bottles of vinegar, canned fish, marmalades and jarred foods like tomato sauce, olives, artichokes, mustard etc. All the ingredients in my pantry are gluten-free. When it comes to my fridge, most of the ingredients in my fridge are fruit, vegetables, seeds and nuts, and cheese and non-dairy ingredients. So the fridge is super easy to organize. I also have another fridge which I keep in the garage. This fridge is a lifesaver when I entertain or during holidays for any extras that I can't fit in my kitchen fridge
Do you do a lot of cooking and what are your favourite dishes to make?
I cook pretty much every day. I love to cook, it is like therapy for me. You will always find freshly made soup in my kitchen. My family calls me "soupaholic" ha ha. I can create a soup from just about anything. From slow-simmering soups like Coconut Curry Lentil Soup to quick and easy soups like 30 Minute Immune Boosting Chicken Soup. In the summer I like to make chilled soups like vichyssoise or mint pea soup. My second favourite thing is baking especially healthy muffins. I love to add seeds, nuts, fruits and often I add almond flour because it adds moisture to gluten-free baking. All of the recipes that I create are gluten-free. I also include vegan, keto, paleo and whole30 recipes
Where do you turn for new recipe ideas?
??I always start with fresh seasonal produce and go from there. Then I decide whether it is a salad, muffin, soup, pasta or something that I have not done in a while and start creating. I must confess very rarely my gluten-free baking turns out on the first try. For me, unless it tastes absolutely delicious, I will re-invent the recipe over and over until it is perfect. I also follow many cooking shows and get ideas from there, and I collect interesting cookbooks from when I travel, they are the best! The recipe may start as a stir-fry and will end up as a stew. I create as I go along, it is so much fun!
Do you plan out your recipes for the week or do you like to be spontaneous?
??I plan out my recipes for the week or even a month. For example, January is always clean and healthy meals, and December is more comfort food with all the bells and whistles. I usually start the week with an easy one pan recipe for casual week nights, then I get into ethnic cuisines and finish the week off with sweets. I love baking on the weekend, such therapy :-)
If you had three wishes, what would you do to make this your dream kitchen?
I love my kitchen the way it is, but if I could add anything, it would be another dishwasher. When I cook, I clean up as I go along, so my dishwasher gets filled very quickly, and it would be nice to have another one. But honestly there is nothing else that I need, I feel very fortunate to have the kitchen that I have.
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