Mise en place – our baking secret

You have many bowls - use 'em

Grandma’s bowls. Wedding presents. Fiesta. Fantastic sales. We have stacks of bowls in the kitchen. To take advantage of that gracious plenty, we practice the French technique of mise en place. Or, as my mother said – make sure you have everything you need before you start.

My husband has taken it to new heights. The ensemble above is his carefully measured preparation for oatmeal-date cookies. The dry ingredients are mixed, the eggs are coming to room temperature – even the vanilla is pre-measured into a bowl. Then all the bags, bottles and cartons are swept away so we have a clean cooking field. I’m telling you, it’s heaven on earth.

As soon as the butter softens, we can just throw the ingredients together in the right order. This works for baking or for cooking dinner. We have our teamwork down to a science, which is a good thing, because our kitchen is about the size of a mini Cooper.

It involves a little more dishwashing, but it’s a good trade-off for a smooth operation.

And, in case you were wondering about the Laundry container, our washer and drier are in the kitchen too. So European, no?

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