Summer is the season for welcoming people for a spot of al fresco dining and enjoying a cool breeze through an open window. However, before you can truly enjoy the summer months in your kitchen, you should take a few steps to ensure it’s properly equipped for all your seasonal needs. Here are eight tips to help you get your kitchen ready for summer.
1. Introduce summer staples
For light and nourishing meals, stock seasonal fruits such as peaches, strawberries, and cherries – or vegetables such as tomatoes, lettuce, cucumber, and peppers. It’s also worth picking up some essential oils, herbs, and spices to bring out the flavours of your summer dishes.
2. Grow your own herbs
Bring the farmer’s market home and grow your own thyme, rosemary, sage, parsley and mint in charming pots. Growing herbs indoors is an easy, inexpensive way to incorporate fresh herbs into your summer cooking, from minty cocktails and parsley-infused pesto pasta to rosemary Hasselback potatoes. You’ll be amazed at how much money you’ll save on your weekly shop.
3. Organise your pantry
If you’re lucky enough to have a pantry or larder, summer is a good time to reorganise it in preparation for lighter bites. Start by throwing away expired food items, then sort your pantry shelves by categories – such as grains, canned goods, and spices. This will make it easier to find things when you need them.
Read our blog on how to have a pantry in your kitchen.
3. Rotate your kitchen equipment
Reorganise your kitchen gadgets to suit the changing seasons. Just as you rotate your wardrobe, adapt your cooking and eating habits to the warmer weather. Swap out the slow cooker for a juice blender, and bring out the ice cream maker and vegetable spiralizer to make the most of the fresh produce.
4. Freshen up your decor
Give your kitchen a summery makeover by adding some fresh new decor. Put away any winter-themed tablecloths, tea towels and oven mitts and brighten your kitchen with vibrant summer prints. If you want to make an even bigger transformation, you could invest in summery seat covers, fresh-cut flowers and a machine-washable floral-print rug.
5. Awaken your summer senses
Fill your kitchen with invigorating summer scents using scented candles, diffusers or fresh herbs. Simply choose some of your favourite herbs, such as rosemary or basil, and place them in a shallow dish or bowl filled with water and you’ll have a subtle summer scent in no time.
For a stronger fragrance, try simmering potpourri on a hob. Gather lemon peel, lavender buds, and orange slices for relaxation and tranquility. Place them in a small saucepan with some water and heat on low. As the mixture simmers, you’ll be able to smell the great summer scent envelope the air.
6. Prepare for outdoor entertaining
If you plan to host a summer garden party, it’s important to make sure that your kitchen is prepared for the extra demand. Stock up on recycled paper plates, cups, and utensils so that you won’t have to worry about washing dishes.
If you’re looking for lightweight, strong, eco-friendly disposable tableware, Eco Leaf Products has a great selection of compostable products.
7. Keep hydrated
Create a refreshing drinks station dedicated to cool and revitalising beverages. If you’re still planning your kitchen design, consider adding a wine cooler, an integrated fridge with an ice maker, and a glass-fronted cabinet to display glasses and bottles of wine, spirits, and cocktail mixers.
With some planning and fresh ingredients, you can also create a worktop refreshment station that will quench everyone’s thirst. Start by stocking up on a few basics like pitchers or jugs, a water bottle filler, cups and ice trays. To make your station more fun, add some colourful straws and stirring spoons – don’t forget to include a ladle too!
These are just a few ways to prepare your kitchen for summertime fun. With some simple steps, you can create a warm and inviting space where friends and family can gather together to enjoy great food in the sunshine. So get cooking and enjoy the season!