When we first moved down to the basement, we had planned on doing our cooking upstairs, on the stove. But there was one big problem with this–it was too cold! It’s fine for quickly putting something in the oven, but I found that we were ordering take-out, rather than spending the time freezing with a pot on the stove. And coffee–that just wasn’t happening, which truly is a tragedy.
So, enter our hot plate. We found this at Rite Aid, actually, for $20. Not only does it heat water for our coffee, but, sitting on our washing machine, it makes the perfect minimalist stove. The burner is a Proctor Silex fifth burner. Because it is made completely of metal, it should be easy to replace any of its components, if they should break.
Tonight’s dinner? Mushroom risotto!
And yes, that mocktail is in a mason jar. You drink out of one too. Admit it.
Before I go, I would like to address our plate situation, as I have gotten a lot of questions about this. Yes, we have three plates, and three sets of silverware. No, this is not the required number of place settings for every minimalist to have. You might be happier with service for 12, and we won’t kick you out of the club for that. But here’s why 3 works for us.
We have no discipline. When we had service for 8, we never washed a dish, until all 8 were used. This led to a pile-up in the dishwasher, which didn’t get run until it was full. And owning a dishwasher means, rinsing, loading, unloading, and putting away all of those dishes. And if we procrastinated on a step–which we did–it led to an unsightly pile-up.
So, with three dishes, the worst we can do is have to quickly wash them before dinner is ready. And that takes a whole 3 minutes. A much better solution, I think.
What do we do when we have company? Well, first you have to realize that anybody who is going to come and visit us already knows that we are…well…us. So they are not expecting an experience that resembles mainstream, in any form. Our parents like to bring their own dishes. As for everyone else–we’ve got bowls, storage containers, lids from storage container, and the cutting board! Parents usually share a plate with their kid, or the kids will all share a plate. The guests always get the real plates, and the forks, if necessary. Rob and I will eat with spoons or chopsticks.
And we’ve got plenty of mason jars for everyone.