People have walk-in closets bigger than my kitchen,” says Deb Perelman, who cooks galettes, gratins, lasagna and more in her 42-square-foot “half-galley”
space, and blogs about her adventures on
smittenkitchen.com, which draws a whopping
1 million page views a month. (Her first cookbook
is slated for release in 2012.) She also shoots
the site’s photos, which are so crisp (or gooey,
or bubbly) that you might reach for a taste. How
does one achieve such culinary feats in a room
this tight? Perelman keeps her single counter
“obsessively clear,” arranges bulky bakeware in
vertical file holders on top of wall cabinets (the
rest is in the linen closet), and resists buying
pricey nonessentials. “You don’t need a lot of
fancy stuff to cook well.” —SARAH STEBBINS
everyone should have...
confidence with new recipes.
Whether you want to impress
with a showstopper or crave
a classic, it’s comforting to
know there’s a recipe you can
practically cook with your
eyes closed. Whatever the
star in your arsenal—say,
a golden roast chicken or a
second-helpings-required stir-fry—just having it as a go-to
success will give you more
stuff deb s
Perelman has about 50
cookie cutters, including a
star-shaped one from the early
days of her relationship with her
husband. “I don’t think I’ve ever
used it, but it makes me smile.”
Perelman reaches for
her mini serrated
utility knife (Wüsthof,
$25, amazon.com) to
cut hard-boiled eggs
or chop apples for her
1-year-old son, Jacob.
She buys 5-pound
bags of almonds,
walnuts and pecans
stores, then freezes
to keep them fresh.
She freezes Jacob’s
food in ice cube
trays. What gets his
slurp of approval?
Peach sauce with
peaches and nutmeg
water, then pureed).
gram and ounce
amounts in her
get out cups
when you could
Her half -quart
pot is a “spectacular
investment for a
kitchen.” She uses it
to heat soup and baby
food, make small
batches of oatmeal
and melt butter.
She keeps a ruler handy
so she can give readers
like exact dimensions of
use it up
serve it for breakfast
Mix leftover popped popcorn with
raisins and toasted sliced almonds.
Drizzle with honey; top with milk.
bulk up crab cakes
Instead of using breadcrumbs, pulse
popped popcorn in a food processor
until finely ground, then combine with
crabmeat, finely chopped celery and
onions, and a dollop of mayonnaise.
Form into patties and pan-fry in olive
oil until golden-brown.
reinvent the crouton
Toss popped popcorn with olive oil,
granulated garlic and ground dried
italian herbs; scatter on a salad.
POPCORN BY KANA OKADA; FOOD AND PROP ST YLING BY PAMELA DUNCAN SILVER. COOKIE CUT TERS
AND SPINACH ICE CUBES, GET T Y IMAGES; ALMONDS AND RULER, IS TOCKPHOTO.COM.