Dear RV Shrink:
We are first-time RVers. We sold our home and just started traveling this winter in a 30-ft. motorhome. It gives new meaning to the term “one butt kitchen.” I enjoy cooking, but this minuscule space seems to cramp my style.
The counter area and refrigerator/freezer are downsized enough to make normal cooking and storage a constant challenge. There is a definite order to getting things done with the least amount of difficulty! I am learning to approach meals in stages.
So far I have said a few naughty words. My husband says I just have to adjust. Am I being unreasonable in comparing this closet-cooking to what I’m used to in a normal-sized kitchen? —Super-downsized in Danville
Dear Down (but not out):
Learning to cope in an RV takes some adjustment. I would recommend starting out with some advice from W.C. Fields: “I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.” This should mellow you out a bit.
On a more serious note, add some counter space. This is easily accomplished with a fold-down counter extension, available at any RV store. If your stove doesn’t already come with a cover, they can also be purchased at an RV store, or improvise with an upside down cookie sheet for added counter space.
Refrigerator and freezer space often calls for shopping more often, but you will become accustomed to stocking the most important items in the space you have. The same applies to dry goods storage.
Many RVer’s have come up with collections of simpler meals that mimic what they have been used to cooking. You may try exploring downsized cooking utensils as well. Have you considered more outdoor cooking? There is a wide array of outdoor cooking appliances that will give you more options when weather permits.
Much of your frustration is becoming familiar with your new space and developing a new routine. Speaking of a new routine, you might want to consider some advice from author Elizabeth Gilbert. She says, “A woman’s place is in the kitchen … sitting in a comfortable chair, with her feet up, drinking a glass of wine and watching her husband cook dinner.” —Keep Smilin’, Richard Mallery a.k.a. Dr. R.V. Shrink
Can’t get enough of the Shrink? Read his e-books, including the brand-new Book 2 in his two-book series: Dr. R.V. Shrink: Everything you ever wanted to know about the RV Lifestyle but were afraid to ask or check out his other e-books.