Alright, so you’ve stumbled upon this term – spice kitchen – and you’re wondering, “What is a spice kitchen ?”
Well, you have come to the right place.
I will cover everything you need to know about spice kitchens.
Let’s get right to it……
What is a Spice Kitchen ?
- A spice kitchen is a secondary kitchen or cooking space next to the main kitchen. It has its own appliances and very good ventilation.
- It’s mainly used for intense cooking with aromatic ingredients. It is usually a smaller size regular kitchen.
The concept of the spice kitchen has diverse origins and has evolved in various ways from different cultures.
In some homes, it’s referred to as a ‘wok kitchen,’ especially in places where stir-frying is an everyday cooking method.
These wok kitchens often have high-power burners, perfect for the quick, high-heat cooking that woks require.
Historically, spice kitchens emerged in regions where aromatic spices are a significant part of daily meals.
Places like India, the Middle Eastern countries, and some parts of Asia, for example.
They separated heavy-duty spice grinding and cooking from the main kitchen to keep the home free of overpowering food smell.
You may say that the cooking smells are not that bad.
I agree, but just imagine foods like Indian curries that are are very delicious, however the smell or onion and garlic while it’s bring cooked is not as great.
And now add cooking fish with these spices.
A lot of the ethnic dishes and cultural cooking use homemade spice blends.
When you make your own spices, the smell of spices is even stronger.
And even after the food has been cooked, the smell tends to be all around the whole house for a long time.
Spice kitchens are made to solve this problem. They are separate kitchens that have a powerful separate ventilation system.
They usually have a double sink to help you keep the counter space free.
Features of a Spice Kitchen
Design Elements & Utilities
These kitchens usually have efficient ventilation, heat-resistant countertops,.
They often have closed doors to keep strong odors of cooking smell contained from the rest of your home.
Apart from the regular stove and oven, there might be specialized equipment like grinders, mortar and pestle sets, and racks dedicated solely to spice storage.
Benefits of a Spice Kitchen
The main benefit of a spice kitchen is that no mater what you cook from extensive curries to simple recipes, the strong aromas of food and spices does not go into the rest of the home.
A spice kitchen offers the Convenience in Cooking. If you are a home chef, the second kitchen gives you convenience of cooking and hides the mess or dirty dishes.
You doesn’t love additional storage space.
Think about storing all the extra large cooking utensils somewhere neatly, the ones you do not need everyday.
You can organize your vast array of spices.
You will have custom drawers to store pots and pans.
You do not need to use the primary kitchen for food preparation.
There has been a growing trend of incorporating spice kitchens as the main kitchens are becoming open concept kitchens.
Open concept kitchen designs incorporate living rooms blending into kitchen space seamlessly.
They are more geared towards being decorative.
Having a spice kitchen gives you a prep kitchen with size of a pantry.
And it’s an additional kitchen.
If you are cooking for. a large crowd, you will have extra ovens, extra cooktops and additional counter space.
If you think about hosting family events, spice kitchens make the cooking process so easy.
Spice Kitchen Adds Value to Your Home
In most cases, these kitchens are really liked by home buyers.
Having extra space for storage and cooking is a bonus for sure.
Having a spice kitchen increases the value of your home.
Steps to Design the perfect spice kitchen
Designing the perfect modern-day spice kitchens require thoughtful consideration.
Beyond just functionality, it’s about creating a space that caters to the unique demands of individual cooking.
With the right design principles, your spice kitchen can be both a practical workspace and a celebration of culinary tradition.
Maximizing Your Space: layout of a spice kitchen
Every inch matters in a spice kitchen. To get the most out of your space:
- Efficiency is Key: Consider a triangular layout for easy access between the stove, sink, and refrigerator.
- Open Shelving: Allows for quick access to frequently used ingredients and tools.
- Pull-Out Counters: Can provide extra workspace when needed and then tuck away.
Essential Appliances for a Fully Functional Spice Kitchen
Having the right tools can make a world of difference:
- High-Powered Exhaust Hood fan: Crucial for venting out strong aromas efficiently.
- Induction Cooktops / Electric range: They heat up quickly and allow for precise temperature control.
- Compact Ovens: For roasting and baking without taking up too much space.
Storage Solutions: Spice Tins, Jars, and Shelving Ideas
Organizing spices and ingredients is vital:
- Spice Tins: Magnetic tins can be placed on the wall, saving counter space.
- Clear Jars: They allow for easy identification and are perfect for stacking.
- Vertical Shelving: Utilize wall space to store ingredients, pots, and pans efficiently.
How to Set Up Your Spice Kitchen
Choosing the Right Location
Ideally, it should be close to the main kitchen but with enough separation to contain strong odors.
A well-ventilated space, perhaps near a window would be best.
Necessary Equipment and Tools
Beyond the regulars, think about what you frequently use. Pestle and mortar? A spice grinder? Make a list and equip your spice kitchen accordingly.
Spice Storage Tips
Ensure spices are stored in airtight container, away from direct sunlight. Regularly check for freshness.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s is a spice kitchen used for ?
A spice kitchen is used primarily for cooking with aromatic spices without filling the rest of the house with strong cooking smell.
Do spice kitchens add value to a home?
Yes, they can add significant value.
How different is a spice kitchen from an outdoor kitchen?
While both are secondary kitchens, an outdoor kitchen is designed for grilling and outdoor entertainment, whereas a spice kitchen is indoors and tailored for aromatic cooking.
Where should I start if I want to install a spice kitchen?
Begin with assessing space, budget, and your cooking needs. Consult a kitchen designer for tailored advice
The spice kitchen, with its rich history and undeniable functionality, is more than just a trend.
Whether you’re an avid cook of aromatic dishes or just someone looking for additional cooking space, a spice kitchen might be a fantastic addition to your home.
What is a butlers pantry vs spice kitchen?
- Purpose: Traditionally, a butler’s pantry was a space between the kitchen and dining area where final food preparation took place. Servants would use this space to store china, silver, and other serving pieces. Today, it’s often used as a staging area for serving meals or for storing items like wine, glassware, and table settings.
- Features: It typically includes cabinetry, countertops, sometimes a sink, and occasionally small appliances like a wine cooler.
- Benefits: A butler’s pantry keeps the mess of meal prep out of sight from guests, provides additional storage, and can function as a serving station when hosting.
Spice Kitchen (also known as a “wok kitchen” or “secondary kitchen”):
- Purpose: A spice kitchen is designed for heavy-duty cooking that might produce strong odors or mess, especially when preparing aromatic or culturally specific dishes.
- Features: This smaller kitchen is equipped with its own stove, sink, and ventilation system. The ventilation is especially important for trapping and eliminating strong food aromas.
- Benefits: The primary advantage of a spice kitchen is to prevent strong cooking smells from permeating the house, ensuring that the main kitchen remains clean and odor-free.
In essence, while both spaces are designed to assist with and enhance the main kitchen’s functionality, a butler’s pantry is more about serving and storage, whereas a spice kitchen is dedicated to the actual cooking process, especially for dishes that are aromatic or messy.
What is the difference between a spice kitchen and a regular kitchen?
A spice kitchen is a smaller, auxiliary space designed specifically for heavy-duty cooking that produces strong odors, equipped with its own appliances and a superior ventilation system.
In contrast, a regular kitchen is the main cooking area in a home, used for everyday meal preparation and often includes a wider range of appliances and storage.