A Spare Ladle, a Plastic Cake Cutter, and a Dead Plant All Walk Into a Bar...

Liveblogging The Kitchn Cure Fall 2013

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Day 3 Task: Declutter appliances, gadgets, and tools

The third task arrived, and I approached it with trepidation after my bruising experience in the pantry on Day 2. On the surface all looked well, since I cleared out most extraneous tools and gadgets before I moved back in June, but I was taking nothing for granted. I knew my drawers had gotten a little messy, and there were a few crumbs in with my silverware. Would I find a horrible spill in the bottom of a cabinet? A broken piece of equipment? Three whisks too many? No, none of those things... although I did find a dead plant.

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I learned from my last kitchen not to store the things I use most in any high or hard-to-reach cabinets. So when I set up this kitchen in June, I put all my glass food storage containers and my pots and pans in the large, low drawers. It's worked out pretty well for the most part, but things do get messy. Here's a 'before' shot of my two utensil drawers and my two storage/cookware drawers.

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Clearly a little straightening up was in order, along with a quick re-evaluation of all the tools to make sure I wanted and/or needed them.

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My food storage drawer did pretty well. There was nothing I wanted to get rid of, and after stacking everything neatly again and moving the lids to the back, I was pretty happy with it.

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(I also keep my two Pyrex liquid measuring cups in this drawer because it's easy to access, and I use them all the time.)

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The same goes for my most-used pots. A little straightening up was all that was required here. (Oh, and moving my box grater, which had gotten stuffed in there somehow.) However, I have decided that I want to free up these drawers even more, so I'm going to be installing a pot rack. More on that next week!

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My silverware drawer definitely needed a good washing and straightening out. I also keep my knives in this drawer. This is not ideal or preferable, which is why I'm getting a magnetic knife rack (again, more on that next week). And the silverware? You know I hate it, but of course it has to stay for now lest we start eating everything with our hands. Moving on...

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My other utensil drawer: does it bug the crap out of me that the labels have rubbed off on one set of my measuring cups? Yes. Do I constantly question whether I'm really using the 1/2 cup or the 1 cup, even though I think I can tell from the size? Yes. Am I going to replace them right now? No. Maybe someday, but for now I'm sucking it up.

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I keep my big pots and some bakeware on the bottom pull-out drawer in my pantry, while my mixing bowls, a few more pot lids, and the immersion blender go on the top shelf. Besides a quick wipe down, all was in order here.

But after opening and reaching to the back corners of every cupboard, I did accumulate this motley crew of unwanted kitchen things:

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  • A second soup ladle (does anyone really need two?)
  • A lone rusty steak knife
  • A plastic cake cutter
  • The metal holder from a French press (the glass broke long ago)
  • Two espresso cups, one with a broken handle
  • 4 plastic egg cups
  • And that dead plant, which had been sitting on my windowsill for far too long.

To the thrift store they go! (Well, more likely they'll go in a box in the basement, where all unwanted things in my apartment go to die.)

My favorite part of this task, though, besides the tidy drawers and cupboards? Collecting a few favorite tools and putting them in a ceramic vase from Farmhouse Pottery, including my wooden butter knife from Estonia, my favorite cheese slicer, and my blinged-out gold and cream spreader from Canvas.

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I'm keeping it next to my other utensil jar!

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How did your Day 3 go?

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(Images: Cambria Bold)

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