Mine is the ugliest kitchen in New York City.
The specimen-yellow formica is peeling away from its press-board innards, and where the veneer has totally separated, we have tacked it back with Scotch tape. You have to take out all of the pots to use any one of them. The oven triggers the smoke alarm whenever it is asked to cook something at over 400 degrees.
And yet, we have lived and cooked with this heinous situation since 1999 --Thanksgivings, birthday parties, dinners, New Year's gatherings -- when my husband and I bought this little co-op in Greenwich Village. Great location, bad kitchen. With one or the other of us a freelancer over the years, it never felt like the right time to renovate. But the time is now.
Another journalist (actually now ex-journalist) has come to the rescue. Former This Old House editor Alexandra Bandon has started North River Renovation, and she will be the project manager. First step: A trip to Ikea (meatballs! chocolate!) in Red Hook, and to Built it Green, a reclaimation nonprofit, in Gowanus. The new kitchen is out there.
Even with some reclaimed items and Swedish-accessible cabinetry, this is going to be a big expense for us. I feel that coming expense tugging at me later at the grocer. Tonight will be a salad night: Protein in the form of chick peas.
A composed salad for when you're becoming uncomposed in Red Hook
9 baby new potatoes
a fist full of green beans, trimmed
green leaf lettuce, torn, washed, and dried (a bunch)
3 radishes, halved and sliced into moons
1/2 an avocado, peeled and cubed