How to design the perfect kitchen, according to a professional chef


Photo credit: Studio Italia
Photo credit: Studio Italia
Acclaimed Australian chef Tony Tan says when designing a kitchen, getting the right layout is crucial

When it comes to designing a kitchen, there are many things to think about these days. Kitchen design has come a long way in recent decades. No longer hidden away behind closed doors, our kitchen are the heart of home – places for entertaining, gathering and of course, cooking.

Modern kitchen design has evolved with this in mind, with appliances and layouts blending elegant aesthetics with smart functionality.

Acclaimed Australian chef Tony Tan says when designing a kitchen, getting the right layout is crucial. “Each vital consideration should work in a harmonious synergy, as they are all interconnected. If a kitchen is not laid out effectively, you will end up wasting time moving between spaces to get what you need. It becomes less enjoyable, and can certainly affect your cooking results as well.”

Here are Tony’s top tips to crafting the perfectly functional kitchen:

1. Layout. Alongside quality appliances, layout is a key consideration in modern kitchen design as both can have a big impact on productivity. Layout will determine how you use the space, and exactly how functional your kitchen will be. Designing an effective kitchen ‘work’ triangle configuration will give you easy access to work surfaces, appliances and the sink, which means your all-important cooking efficiency is maximised.

2. Benchtop. The second thing to consider when designing your kitchen is your benchtop. How your benchtop is going to be configured in terms of cooktop, sink and working space is connected to the layout stage. Keeping these elements together helps create an efficient and harmonious environment, saving time when preparing food and cooking. Everything within your kitchen will develop from these initial plans.

3. Storage. The next most important consideration when designing a kitchen is storage. A good kitchen will have plenty of storage, with easy access to everything that you need while cooking. As long as you utilize the space to maximise your storage, you will ensure that you have room for everything – from your ingredients, to plates and utensils, cookware and anything else you need on hand when cooking amazing food.

4. Finishes. The finishes you select for your kitchen need to find the perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality. In a home kitchen there is a need for clean, functional benchtops and sufficient work surfaces that are hygienic.

5. Appliances. If you’re someone who is serious about your cooking, you will need to look for appliances that are the highest quality and are time efficient. The reason top-of-the-line appliances are so highly coveted is that you can rely on them to last and to work effectively for many years to come. It’s important to consider the effect of an appliance and how it relates to the room, ensuring both its technology and aesthetics are as advanced as possible

When needing things done fast, it is ideal to have appliances that offer a combination of different cooking methods such as Gaggenau’s multifunctional Combi-Steam Oven. “My Gaggenau combi-steam oven allows me to roast and to steam, achieving amazing results in a single appliance,” says Tony. Vastly expanding cooking options by combining humidity (steam) with convection (dry heat circulated by fans), this innovative appliance cooks more evenly while retaining the essential nutrients of your ingredients.


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