While I am very much a fan of incorporating home-cooked meals while travelling, cooking in a foreign kitchen is not without its difficulties, as I found out during my 3-week visit to London last October. Allow me to elaborate with some vital lessons learned:
- Never underestimate the power of a spice rack. Even the most basic spices can take a meal from mediocre to marvellous – but as any seasoned cook (pun intended) will know, a decent collection of spices can take years to cultivate, and unsurprisingly, do not come included in most furnished apartments.
- You may have to get creative with your cooking instruments. With only a few (read: 2) pots and pans at my disposal, and no oven-safe trays, I definitely had to improvise with some tinfoil and carefully timed cooking to make a full meal.
- Storing leftovers is near impossible in a sparsely stocked kitchen. Invest in some tupperware for any stays over two weeks, if you plan to do any kind of cooking.