Yesterday, I had my first company in the Studio at Sassafras Farm! It was an absolutely wonderful day.
Our day: Pat and John from North Carolina, Kickstarter backers, arrived around 10 a.m. The studio is not quite finished yet, so I spent the preceding couple of days laying in supplies and setting up to make-do. I still don’t have a couple of crucial items to make cooking and teaching in the studio more convenient, including my stainless steel worktables–but we managed! The first thing I did was burn the sausage before they arrived. I haven’t used these stoves before so I wasn’t being quite adept at adjusting the heat PLUS I left the sausage alone for a few minutes while I went back to the house to do something. When I came back, the sausage was burned. I gave it to the dogs and started over. Luckily, I had more sausage. And also luckily, that was the last of my kitchen trouble. For our brunch, we had French omelets (Julia Child-style), sausage, fruit, blueberry muffins, and Grandmother Bread with blueberry-lime jam and some Beulah Petunia butter from my freezer stash. I had roses, rosemary, hydrangea, and lamb’s ear in a quart jar on the table. It was quite lovely!
But, before we ate, they were ready to tour the farm. I took them through the house and out to the barn and the fields. Everybody got petted. Pat collected eggs. Here’s Pat and Chloe checking out the cows, who were napping by the creek and didn’t come up to say hello.
Back in the studio, we had brunch. I made some fresh croutons for our salad later and popped those in the oven while we had a breadbaking workshop. Dinner was going to be pizza, so we made our doughs and set them to rise while we took off for a little drive down the backroads. We stopped at the slanted little house, where I lived for two and a half years when I first moved to West Virginia, and visited with my cousin’s wife, Sheryl, and Georgia. Then we drove to Stringtown and toured around there. By the time we got back to Sassafras Farm, Morgan was off the bus and she had a little fun with my camera while waiting for us to show up.
Beautiful dork. That’s what happens when I leave my camera behind.
For dinner, we had Swiss, bacon, mushroom, and onion pizza with salad, and there were enough desserts to serve a small army. Pat and John brought some delicious desserts with them, too, including an awesome chocolate sauce and ice cream. (She has promised me the recipe! Morgan LOVED it.) We ate dinner in the perfect, cool evening air on the studio decks overlooking the pastures. The chickens provided redneck entertainment when we tossed them pieces of pizza crust, one chicken grabbing the piece and running with ten more chickens in chase. We had shut the front gates and let the horses down from the pasture, so they were grazing about the studio and gracing us with their magical presence. It was truly a sweet day. I had more planned for the day than could be fit into the day and we skipped some activities, so I’ll have to remember that in the future. Don’t overplan, Suzanne! People want time to sit down and just enjoy the farm.
Morning after in the studio…. Time to clean up!
By now you’re either wondering what the title of this post is about or you’ve forgotten about it entirely, but back to the sinks! If you’re planning a remodel to your kitchen, or even just dreaming about it, here’s an idea for you. My sink setup in the studio came about due to the requirement of a three-bowl sink for health department approval. (The three-bowl sink is for dishwashing purposes–washing, rinsing, sanitizing–separate sinks for each. You must also have a handwashing sink and a mop sink–those are located in the studio bathroom.) Last year, BuckeyeGirl had generously donated a three-bowl sink for my workshop kitchen. It had been disposed of during a restaurant remodel.
Unfortunately, when the inspector took a look at the sink, he nixed it. While it does have three bowls, the middle bowl is smaller, too small, and it doesn’t meet health department requirements for a three-bowl sink. (With BuckeyeGirl’s permission, I’m passing the sink on to CindyP, who will be using it as a garden sink, so it won’t go to waste! I’ve got it stashed in one of the stalls in the barn for now.)
You can see the three-bowl sink in this photo–notice the smaller middle bowl.
Three-bowl sinks are expensive, usually running $1000 or MORE. Yikes. But they’re required. Fortunately, I discovered upon discussing the sink situation with the inspector that the three bowls DO NOT HAVE TO BE ATTACHED. They just have to be placed fairly close together. Wow. That was like the sky opening up. With approval from the inspector, I bought a new, deep two-bowl sink (for around $269) and a huge, deep one-bowl sink (around $159) and placed them together. (Sinks purchased at Lowe’s.) For under $500, I had a three-bowl sink.
These fantastic faucets have pull-out sprayers. I love them.
Between the deep, deep sinks and the tall, tall faucets with pull-out sprayers, I will easily handle large pots for cheesemaking and canning. (The faucets were around $129. Also from Lowe’s.)
Yesterday evening when Morgan and I were together at the sinks in the studio, both of us running water and working at the sinks, it felt amazing. In the house, we’re often nudging each other out of the way when we both want to get to the sink. An additional benefit to having the two-bowl and the one-bowl over a standard three-bowl is that you have TWO FAUCETS.
It’s not too unusual for people to add an extra small sink in a home kitchen, but if you’re thinking of something like this for a remodel in your kitchen, or are building a new house and planning a kitchen–if you have the space, and especially if you spend a lot of time in the kitchen and/or have a big family, think about a second LARGE one-bowl sink. It is wonderful! The one-bowl sink is actually sold as a laundry/utility sink. It is an oversized and very deep sink–perfect for huge pots.
I love the deep two-bowl sink so much I’m planning to replace the awful sink in the house with one just like it. The faucet in the house is also terrible. While I can’t do a kitchen remodel right now, I’ll be happy to just replace the sink and faucet. (No room in the house kitchen for an additional one-bowl sink, of course!)
But if you have room for a sink setup like this, you won’t regret it!