How to cook dinner without a sink or a cooktop

So, friends, the kitchen is on its way to completion but it’s not there just yet. There’s a whole process wherein I need to seal the new butcher block counters to make sure that they’re all friendly to water, oil, and the various messes I will certainly make. So though we moved in last Sunday, we’ve been eating a lot of takeout. You know how that always sounds nice, but then it isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? Even on our honeymoon, in food paradise British Columbia, there was a point where I was sick of all the beautiful fresh produce and sparkling local seafood. Going out for every meal, every day gets a little cumbersome (not to mention expensive!) and I just felt like, can I just make myself a sandwich already? In that case, Kyle and I found a little place that served super simple pasta and it satisfied some of my cravings for a home cooked meal (likely because that’s always my go-to). In this case, I said hey, we’ve got an oven!

So, making dinner without a kitchen sink or a cooktop. First, pick something you can make in your oven (a roast chicken, because that’s my other go-to, the very first thing I ever learned to cook for myself), and/or something that doesn’t need to be cooked at all (a lovely salad with strawberries, since they’re in season and actually taste like themselves instead of that cardboard cutout of them you get the rest of the year).

Chicken in the oven

Next, chop your vegetables on your lovely green tablecloth that’s protecting your new unsealed countertops. Then, rinse your chicken in the laundry room sink. Set it on top of your vegetables in a cast iron pan, tie it up, and season it (this is how Thomas Keller says to do it – who are you to argue?).

Hey beta carotene, let’s hang out! This is a very orange nest for the chicken (sweet potatoes and carrots – and non-orange onions).


Put that chicken in the oven. Guess at how to turn it on and set the timer. Hope you’re doing it right. Is it hot? It smells hot.


While the chicken and veggies are cooking, make a salad. Chop up your strawberries and other stuff. Make some vinaigrette, and while you’re add it, why not make a whole bunch? That will make lunchtime salads during the week a lot simpler. This version is super easy (olive oil, vinegar, just a skotch of Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and a chopped up shallot – taste and edit til yummy) and in my humble opinion, WAY better than any bottled dressing you could find. I especially love that vinegar, which is made by a local olive mill. It’s divine.

Salad dressing

Wait for chicken to be done. Write a blog about it. Have a beer.

Hooray beer!

I don’t know anything about this Hopper Whitman, except that it was on sale and it’s very tasty.

Mmm chicken

Done! Yum! And heck yeah, we’re eating on paper plates. It’s not the end of the world not having a sink or dishwasher, but washing dishes in the laundry room sink is a pain because it’s super low. So why make it harder than it has to be?

paper plate dinner

Eat it all up. Deelish. And all you really have to wash is the salad bowl, utensils, and cutting board, so that’s not too bad!

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