Tips on Maintaining a Kitchen

TIPS ON MAINTAINING A KITCHEN – We all know that installing a new kitchen is a very expensive thing.  It’s not just the cost of the units and Worktops but all those expensive, and hopefully energy efficient, kitchen appliances that you bought.

It makes perfect sense after spending all that hard earned money that you’ll want to keep your kitchen in working order and keep it looking great for years to come. To help you in your quest for maintaining a really beautiful kitchen here are our top tips.

Kitchen Countertops

The condition of these is vital to both the aesthetics of your kitchen and to the health and hygiene issues.  When installing a new kitchen or just the counter tops it’s a good idea to consult with the people installing them to recommend the best ways to preserve them and keep them clean.

Special consideration will always have to be given to Wooden Countertops as these will need periodical oiling and you must ensure that any spillages are instantly mopped up.  Wooden countertops can require a fair amount of work over laminated or granite worktops but certain, as with granite, the natural feel and coloration is simply stunning.

When it comes to cutting up your fruits, vegetables and meat always use a chopping board as this will save you scratching the surfaces of your worktop.

Hygiene Note Use separate chopping boards or your meat and vegetables to reduce the risk of cross-contamination.

Kitchen Wall and Floor Units

When opening and closing the doors try not to hang on them.  You will find over time that the doors will begin to sag and look awful and they are shifted out of line.  If you do spot a door that is sagging or not shutting properly take a screwdriver, open the doors fully and adjust the hinge.

Do not operate steamers or kettle under the wall units. The steam over time will severely damage the unit until it will need replacing.  If you look underneath you can see the unit coating bubbling and beginning to peel away from the timber.

When cleaning the unit DO NOT use abrasive cleaners or applicators such as a Brillo Pad. These will simply scratch the surface and over time make them look awful.

Quick Tip:  When you install your new kitchen always order a few extra door handles and hinges as this will allow you to have spares in the event they get damaged.  This principle is the same as tiling as you should always have a few spares in case one gets cracked or damaged in some way.

Kitchen Sink

Clean your sinks after use and if you have a Stainless Steel sink then avoid using abrasive cleaner or applicators.

Make sure that the silicone sealant around your sink is in good order as this will prevent water seeping around the sink and damaging your work tops.  This is especially essential if you have wood or laminate worktops.

Check out what people are talking about in our Kitchen Ideas Group.

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  • Vineyardflute

    Timely tips!-All young people, especially renters should watch this video.  I myself never thought about possible damage being done by the coffeepot or crock pot being under the cabinets.  I will need to pay attention better when running these appliances.
          The tip on having more than 1 cutting board and designating them for seperate food duty is also so important.  Fortunately, I am good about my cutting boards.
    Like the blue kitchen also.  

    • hometipster

      Hi Dee
      Glad to hear you found the kitchen tips useful.  For sure, just check under the wall units to see if there is any damage – hot steam can really do a lot, so you do have to be careful.

      You’re right… more students should pay attention to food preparation and certainly use separate chopping boards.  I actually have one for veg and fruit, the other or just chicken, one for pork, one for beef and the other for fish.  Better being safe than sorry.

      I don’t get to spend that much time in the kitchen but as I have grown older I find that I really enjoy my cooking.  Did a great dish the other night… Steamed Salty Chicken with a Spring Onion and Ginger side sauce with Steamed Rice.

      Have a great day Dee.

      • Vineyardflute

        Hey there Graham,
            Yeah, the cutting board thing hit me about 10 years ago.  Before then I would just flip it over–one side for meat the other for everything else.  Now I have several-one each for raw meats, cooked meats, veggies & fruits, pizza, and breads.  They are color coded and titled with permanent marker on both sides to avoid mix-ups.
             Sounds like a delicious meal-how do you steam chicken?   We eat a great deal of rice and veggies.  Chicken is the token meat with an occassional beef.  (I am the only one who will eat fish)  Do you grill at all?  Are you able to grow your own veggies?  Fruit?
            Jeez, sorry about that got on a roll of questions, haha.  The Inquisition is now over–temporarily.  Great to see you inspiring on HT again-good to have your contributions.
                                      Enjoy your day Graham,

        • hometipster

          Hi Dee
          Now that’s a great idea you have … color coding the chopping boards – I’ve done the same thing but with acrylic paint and I would certainly recommend that everyone color codes their chopping boards to save any mix ups.

          Some great questions Dee :)  Let me answer these:

          1. Growing Fruit and Veg – we have a fair amount growing in the garden, from Tomatoes to Mangos.  Honestly it’s my girlfriend who loves growing but we do share when I have time.  

          They have local markets here with fresh produce everyday and it’s always very cheap.

          2. I love fish and living on a island we get a huge variety.  Here’s a really good one if you like your fish…

          Take a Flounder or other flat fish.  Score it to the bone both sides.  Place Spring Onion and Ginger on top and then steam for 10 to 15 minutes.  Once it’s done take a wok or skillet and pour 5 or 6 spoonfuls of olive oil in and add to this about 1 or 2 spoonfuls of soya sauce.  Bring to the boil until it almost catches alight.  Place the fish on a serving dish and pour the hot source over the fish.  Serve with steam rice and a nice bottle of dry Chardonnay….. Enjoy :)

          3. Grilling …. we do all sorts of cooking here, from grilling, frying and steaming.  Only thing I cannot do is baking – we don’t have an oven, they are way too expensive.

          4. Steam Chicken
          Take 3 or 4 chicken legs, complete with thighs and cut these into strips of 1″ – leave everything on the bone.

          Salt the chicken to taste and add a little pepper.

          Place in a steamer.  If you don’t have a steamer, then use a skillet with water and place a bowl inside with the chicken in it and then cover with a lid.  It takes only 15 minutes to cook and the meat is very tender when done and not dry at all.

          Take some olive oil and finely chop up spring onion and ginger and let this sit and fuse.  Once you are done you can eat this will rice and dip the chicken in the sauce – simply divine!

          If you try them out Dee do let me know how you get on and whether it’s to your taste.

          Have a great day!  Graham

          • Vineyardflute

            Hey Graham,
                    Thank-you for the recipes and for clarifying how to “steam” the chicken.  I’ve no steamer so I will use the alternative method and for sure will let you know how I liked it (them) since I may try the fish also.
                    That’s pretty interesting that you can have a good variety in your garden.  I wasn’t sure with the sandy soil and salty air what could be grown and perhaps what needed to be shipped in.  Thanks for answering my questions.
                    The only problem with the color-coded boards is the sizes vary which works for some things fine, but also you cannot find the same colors when they need replaced.  Another reason for writing on them.  I can always find clear and white so they are always for meats.  Glad you liked the idea.
                          Here’s to a sunny day,  Dee

          • hometipster

            The soil here is pretty sandy but anything grows due to the amount of water and sunshine the plants have.  From where I site I can see the mountains with the tropical forests.

            Chopping boards – you could try a stamp, not ink but something simply that would create a pattern in the wood, if it’s wood, so that you code the boards.

            Glad you liked the Steam Chicken/Fish idea… do let me know if you like it :)

            Have a great day.