Monday, June 28, 2010

Naked Kitchen

When we went on vacation, we stayed in cabins with kitchens. The kitchens had dishes and pots and silverware and towels and dishsoap. But no foil. No cling-wrap. No wax paper. No Tupperware. And none of my specially set-aside garbage. [gasp]

Until that first night at the family reunion, I didn't realize how much I rely on junk that most people toss in the trash. Where do you put leftovers? In an old peanut butter jar, right? Oh. No old peanut butter jars in my vacation cupboards.

When you make a big batch of food that needs to be stored until the next meal, doesn't it go in an old ice-cream pail? What happens when there's no old ice-cream pail?

When you nuke something and don't want it to spatter all over the inside of the microwave, what do you cover it with? Some people use paper towels or wax paper. I use a dinner plate. We also use plates as "lids" on bowls of leftovers in the fridge. But when you have only 4 plates for 6 people, you've gotta watch to ensure you've got plates to eat off of.

So what's another option as a leftover lid? Obviously, a plastic bag that you picked up in the produce dept, the bag which transported your lettuce or your tomatoes home. Or an old bread bag. But in a naked kitchen that you're borrowing for the week, there is no stash of old bread bags, no stash of old sandwich bags, no stash of little glass jars to shake-shake-shake up your flour and liquid for a white sauce.

I found a reprieve when we discovered that the clean coffee mugs were covered with sandwich bags. That enabled us to get through the first day until we made it to the grocery store and brought home [ta da!] lettuce bags and apple bags! As we progressed through the week, I built up my stash of Good Garbage, and thus began to function better in my little vacation kitchen.

And then came the day to leave. I was compelled to [gasp] throw all that perfectly decent garbage into the trash! (Fear not. Although it was traumatic, I managed to live through the waste of all that helpful garbage.)


  1. Storage containers are always on my vacation list - especially since we have the cooking teams who always have left-overs. They wouldn't fit into the box, so I left them home this year and used plastic storage bags. We had plenty. Could have shared. Sorry.

  2. I always take a whole box of ziploc type baggies on vacation with me-even when we go to a hotel. I have used them often to put soap and water in them and wash sippy cups and other items without filling up the whole sink that is probably full of germs. We use them so often on vacation that I can't remember what all we use them for besides that.

  3. Thanks, Mom. I did grab some of your foil a when I was up in the big house to put on containers that were there that needed to be covered before I took them back to our cabin. But it never crossed my mind to go looking for boughten plastic storage bags -- I was hunting old used ones, just like at home.

    Ewe, there you go now, grossing me out about hotel sinks. I'd never thought of that before. Blech!

  4. I always take gallon-size ziplocs on trips too, especially if we're driving. They make good garbage bags because they trap in stink (like, from diapers), and you can zip them shut and not have to worry about the garbage spilling in the car.

    Baby wipes come in handy a lot too.

  5. as one of those stragners you mentioned...i noticed on my own blog a private posting option...if that helps..BTW i do love reading your thoughts i find it helps me with my own. thanks a bunch from sylvie in ottawa canada.

  6. Howdy, Sylvie! So you're the one who reads from Ottawa. Nice to "meet" you.

    I know blogger allows the option to make a blog private, allowing only certain readers. But I don't want to do that. It's even okay with me that my blog is searchable in different search engines. It's just that "next blog" button that was beginning to get to me Happily, that's dropped down to 5-10% of all hits in the last week. Still high, but down significantly from what it's been for the last several months.