Many people decide to stay home during the remodelling so they can be there to answer any questions and just generally observe the changes taking place. If this is you, plan well in advance and really carefully. The most inconvenience is suffered by those who do not plan thoroughly and leave some things to chance.
A family needs to eat regularly daily, in fact, whilst undergoing these changes; you'll be surprised at how much we take our kitchens and their user friendliness for granted.
Firstly, you don't want to eat out all the time – it's way too expensive and quite impractical. You also cannot live solely on take-outs. It might seem like a great idea at first but after a while you long to 'get back to normal': it's also not healthy.
Set up a temporary kitchenette in another room in your house. Don't choose the garage as your remodelling team will probably be in need of that space. Maybe you have a spare room that you can utilise for this purpose. All you need is a kettle, toaster, a couple of hotplates or a hotplate oven, microwave and fridge.
Make sure this temporary kitchenette has a place where you can make tea and coffee, assemble cereals for breakfasts, and prepare and pack school lunches if the kids are with you and it's not the holidays. So you'll also need a table on which to prepare things and possibly serve on and eat off.
It's best to plan basic meals that don't need a big production in preparing or cooking. Perhaps you could buy some prepared meals from stores and reheat them, and mix it up by cooking a large amount of meals in advance, and labelling and freezing them. Another guideline would be if it's Winter organise to have soups, stews, casseroles, pies, etc., and if it's Summer then think in terms of salads and lighter, freshly prepared foods. Whatever the Season or weather, you will certainly need lots of comfort food. It's what reassures us and keeps us going in times of uncertainty. Cottage pie and mac and cheese are just two of the many comfort food dishes that people have at the top of their lists: just as well because they're easy to freeze and defrost and heat.
Stock your makeshift pantry with disposables such as paper plates, napkins, cups and utensils. Cleaning up is easier. If the need arises – and it will – you still have bathroom sinks and a bathtub in which you can clean the pots and dishes. The can opener and canned goods might well do overtime. Also keep a stock of non perishable items for snacks. Crackers, peanut butter, nuts and dried fruit, and biscuits will stop you from starving between meals.
Depending on the weather you can take the indoors to the outdoors and make your braai do double duty. It's surprising how creatively you can cook on a braai, and if you didn't know, now's the time to find out. At weekends it could be fun to experiment and do more outside living than usual.
We at Kitchen by Design want you to remain fit and healthy during your kitchen remodelling and will happily give you more hints and tips to assist you with the temporary food situation. Just call us.