Eileen's Beachside Oasis Kitchen

Eileen's Beachside Oasis Kitchen

Leela Cyd
May 21, 2013

Eileen and her husband Mark live about a block from the beach in Venice, California. The proximity to the ocean and access to bountiful fresh produce year round also informs her cooking style, which she explains as "simple, healthy and interesting." Her 250-square-foot kitchen space fits this description as well — come take a tour of this modern, cozy space!

Eileen grew up in Oregon with a one-acre vegetable garden, and is passionate about healthy living and eating. Most mornings she whips up smoothies with coconut milk and whatever fruit is at its best, or has a bowl of homemade granola. These quick meals are great for her and her husband as they hop out the door. (Mark surfs every day and works as a creative director; Eileen is a photographer and model.)

Their rental kitchen is simple and charming. The space is about 200-square-feet, has light sea-glass colored tiles, and most distinctively, exposed beams painted black. The black ceiling keeps the space feeling modern yet cozy, an interesting contrast to the airy light tones of the adjacent leaving room, while the cabinets have frosted glass and just hint at what's inside them — another nice detail. This is one stylish and functional kitchen, without extras or frills.

8 Questions for Eileen (and Her Kitchen)

1. What inspires your kitchen and your cooking?
Fresh organic ingredients and the brightness of fresh produce and herbs always gets the creative juices flowing when it comes to cooking. I grew up with a one acre vegetable garden, and have been inspired by produce ever since. Making different dishes... I get bored of the same. I also love the simplicity of grilling, but my husband has to do it once I've done all the prep and marinating. He's an Aussie, and loves to grill through sunsets in our rooftop garden.

2. What is your favorite kitchen tool or element?
I don't know what I did before I had a handheld lemon squeezer. So simple, but I use it daily. I guess my knives too. I was given a couple of ceramic knives that are incredible. My husband made me a couple of beautiful black walnut cutting boards. The wood came from Oregon, my home state, and while we were there visiting my parents he made them in my Dad's workshop. They remind me of home.

3. The biggest challenge in your kitchen:
I don't own it, so I don't have the freedom to make changes. I would definitely have a bigger pantry.

4. Biggest indulgence or splurge in the kitchen:
I don't use anything too crazy... but some things you just can't do without a food processor.

5. Is there anything you hope to add or improve in your kitchen?
It could certainly be more organized, but that's not my forte.

6. How would you describe your cooking style?
Simple, healthy, and interesting.

7. Best cooking advice or tip you ever received:
Try it. You'll never know if you don't. My mother is my resource for my baking conundrums. She's always there with wisdom for the oven.

8. What are you cooking this week?
Well, granola for the week, and short rib tacos.

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Resources of Note

• Glassware: CB2
• Pots and pans: jelly roll pan from Sur La Table; pots by Le Creuset
• Fridge: GE profile
• Oven: Frigidaire
• Plates/cups: Plates Le Coq Hotelerie (purchased from American Rag Cie), cups miscellaneous but there are a few Heath and Intelligentsia mugs.
• Cutting boards: Made by Mark
• Ceramic knives: Kyocera from Sur La Table

Thank you so much Eileen for letting us peek into your kitchen!
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(Images: Leela Cyd)

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