Since I moved back into my little flat in Montmartre, I have been busy doing some improvements to get more clarity and optimize storage space, specifically in my open kitchen. Being on the 4th floor I have plenty of light coming through the flat on both sides, however the old kitchen corner was too (red) dark. I also needed to fit an oven to be able to bake, wanted a dishwasher, a freezer and plenty of cupboards to keep my all my props within an easy reach.
I also wanted to do as much as I could by myself to save on costs. So I started dismantling some of the existing kitchen cabinets, including the stainless steel backsplash (which I all managed to sell on Leboncoin), moved the island against the wall next to a new addition: a second-hand 3-in-1 freestanding stove (yes a cooktop, an oven and a dishwasher, ideal for tiny spaces!) and repainted the remaining parts in white. My father helped me to connect the stove and downsize the tall cabinet (thanks to its electrical saw) into a small cupboard to hide the (not-so-sexy) electrical counter. I put a new made-to-measure stainless steel backsplash by Plakinox to replace the old one and keep a consistency in colours: white, grey and wood.
On the opposite wall, behind the old wardrobe, I found a small cavity which I have had enlarged to fit a small bottom mount fridge (with freezer). Then the idea was to integrate the fridge into a custom made cupboard making it almost invisible. Now raised on its step, it is even more practical. The job was not easy, as you can imagine in old Montmartre flats, nothing is straight from floors, to ceilings and walls, but the carpenter, Meuble d’O, managed pretty well. The shelves above provide additional and versatile storage whilst not being overwhelming in terms of volume. I am quite happy with the result!
I also added some extra shelves and utensils racks from the well-known Swedish and Japanese stores to complete the kitchen. With all this, I managed to fit everything: my food jars, my tea pots collection, my ceramic bowls from Australia (Mud, Studio Enti), Japan and England (Sytch Farm Studios), my vintage props and modern cake stands, including my growing collection of cookbooks! I still keep my trunk (hidden under a piece of linen) for some small extra props.
And for the days I host a big dinner/brunch party, I made a wooden board (out of fir planks) that allows me to sit 8 people around the table thanks to Tip Toe feet. I just need to tint it now, grey or white, that is the question…
Finally I purposely decided to keep small appliances on my counter top because I use them quite often and it makes the kitchen more lively with still lots of working space.
The last things I would like to do is renovate my timber floor and tile the kitchen corner (in a L-shape to follow the countertop) with cement tiles for hygienic and aesthetics reasons.
Cooking and baking in my kitchen is now a real pleasure with all that space and that light coming through on late mornings!
So today, I am sharing a frittata recipe. Indeed I started making them in Oz for quick weekdays breakfasts (as an alternative to my traditional toast, butter and jam!). I change what I put in it depending on the season, what I have at hand in my fridge or to use up veggie leftovers. I made this winter frittata with what was available at my local shop Au Bout du Champ, in individual portions (more practical as I tend to eat 1 mini cake per morning) using my mini loaves tray. But you can also make a big one in a gratin dish to share for brunch at the weekend.
Winter frittata recipe
Prep time : 15 min / Cooking time : 15 + 30 min
Serves 6 to 8
150g butternut, peeled and sliced
50g kale, washed, stems removed and shredded
80g mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 small onions (1/3 cup or 40g)
20g feta cheese, in crumbs
1/2 cup double cream
1 Tbsp of olive oil
salt & pepper
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F
Stir fry all the onions, butternut and kale with olive oil for about 10 min on medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 5 min.
In a bowl, beat the eggs lightly. Add the double cream and season with salt and pepper.
Place the vegetable stir fry in all the cavities of the mini loaves tray (if using a regular gratin dish, using parchment paper to avoid sticking at the bottom) and pour over the egg mixture. Then sprinkle with the feta crumbs on top. Season with salt and pepper.
Bake for 30 min or until set. Allow to cool for 5-10 min before eating warm. You can also eat your frittata slices cold (which I do in the morning). I generally keep the frittata up to 5 days in my fridge.