The secret to good housekeeping (Finnish style)

I have a very close friend in New Zealand whose house is always clean and tidy. Despite a busy schedule she takes pride in keeping her surroundings neat and somehow finds the time to do so. Recently though she confided that she has on occassion hidden dirty dishes in her oven if she doesn’t have time to wash up before guests arrive ( I once hid Jonathan’s Christmas present in the dishwasher because I knew at the time he never opened it, but that’s another story).

Our kitchen in Helsinki

Our kitchen in Helsinki

Here in Finland they have thought of one of the best ideas I have come across for keeping the kitchen tidy. We are lucky in our current kitchen that we have lots of bench space, but when we haven’t its annoying to have to compete with a dish drying rack for room. Like most people we often leave our washed dishes to air-dry too, meaning there can be a pile of dishes out on the bench.

The dish drying rack hidden in the cupboard above the sink

The dish drying rack hidden in the cupboard above the sink

So I love the Finnish idea of having a cupboard above the sink that has two drying racks installed. Underneath is a drip-tray that catches any water. You just wash the dishes, stacking them in the cupboard as you go and then shut the doors. When you come back in the morning the dishes are dry and ready to be put away (or used from the dish rack). The flipside is it also means your oven can be used for other things – like stashing unfinished ironing before you answer the doorbell.