Take a leaf out of pro chefs’ books: prep as much as possible before switching the stove or oven on
• Take out all your dry and fresh ingredients.
• Group according to the dishes you’ll be making. Chop and premeasure as much as possible.
• Preheat your oven and take out all the tools you’ll be using, from pots and pans to colanders, chopping boards, mixing bowls and measuring cups.
• Baking? Save yourself the hassle of having to change to a large mixing bowl halfway through the recipe by estimating the volume of the ingredients you’re using.
• Prepare a sink of hot, soapy water so you can clean as you go.
Tips to make cleaning as you go less daunting
• Keep an open container for vegetable peels nearby while you chop – put these straight into your compost once you’re done.
• Shift the dustbin next to you to cut down on floor spills.
• Fill a tall container with hot, soapy water and place in the prep zone. (A cereal Tupperware is perfect.) Pop all dirty knives, whisks and so on into it as you go, which will make washing-up later easier.
• Ready to switch on the dishwasher? Pop in all the used dishcloths and sponges – the heat will kill any remaining bacteria. (Remember to give the fridge handle a wipe too.)