Setting Thesaurus Entry: Kitchen

Sight

Tile floor, stainless steel/black/white appliances (dishwasher, fridge, stove, microwave, dishwasher), blender, toaster, pots, pans, jar with cooking implements (wooden spoons, spatulas, whisks, flippers) knife block with knives, banana tree, fruit bowl, place mats on table, wooden chair/table, fresh flowers, herb pots, plants, calendar (filled with appointments, events, days off school, holidays, etc), salt and pepper shakers, spice rack, shelves with knickknack and pictures, cookie jar, set of canisters for flour sugar and coffee, a coffee maker, kettle, teapot, a teabag left out on a spoon, spilled sugar or juice on a counter top, granite counters, chipped/scratched counters, tile counters, cupboards, lazy Susan's, a pantry, pull-out cupboards, drawers, cutlery tray, curtains, greasy range hood, fogged-up windows, old juice splatters on the walls/floorboards, garbage can, dog dishes, fire extinguisher, a back door or door leading to the deck, an island, sink, faucets, gunk and grime around the faucets, spider webs, flies buzzing around, fruit flies, dishes left out on the counter or piled in the sink, milk left out on the counter, cereal floating in a dish from breakfast, toast crumbs, pet hair on the floor, paw prints, boot marks, napkin holder, telephone/answering machine, a small floor rug over by the sink and back door, garbage disposal, recycling tray or bin, can opener, slow cooker

Sounds

Butter/oil sizzling in the pan, toast popping up, whirr of the range hood fan, the grinding of the microwave turntable & ding as it finishes, cooking timers, oven temperature readiness beep, the slosh and clank of a dishwasher, the grinding of a garburetor, the gurgle of the coffee pot, whistle of steam from the kettle, conversation, laughter, chopping against a cutting board, eggs dropping into hot grease, the hiss of a pot boiling over, radio/TV playing in the background, coffee/spice grinder, food processors mixing, cutlery clattering against the table, the clink of glasses, scrape of cutlery against a plate, bowls banging to the counter, the rumble of a can opener, the rattle of plastic wrap/tin foil, The glug of milk being poured, oh's and ahs of appreciation, the tap of a spoon against a pot, the fridge door opening and closing, the rustling of a bag of chips being opened, the squeak of a pantry door or dishwasher, chairs scraping the floor, pot lids banging, the rustle of cereal being poured into a bowl

Smells

Foods of all kinds: sauces, cakes, cookies, bacon, onions, spaghetti, stir fry, eggs, pancakes, fresh bread, stews, casseroles, pies, turkey etc), spices, steam, coffee brewing, cleaners, soap, hot oil, burnt toast/grease/meats, rotten food/leftovers in the fridge, decomposing root vegetables in the pantry (potatoes, onions, turnips, etc), excessive sweetness from rotting fruit in fruit bowls, garbage smells, bleachy smell or algae smell from tap water, mildew on windows by sink, air freshener candle, 'wet soil smell' from watered plants in kitchen area, the char smell of an extinguished candle

Tastes

Food, fruity/dry/sweet/robust wines, beer, fizzy pop, water, steam from a mug, coffee, tea, inhalation of spices mingling in the air, desserts, baking, ice cream, a cold metallic taste of a spoon in the mouth, cold, crisp fruit from the fridge, snacking on buttery crackers from the box, cookies, etc, Milkshakes, smoothies, meats that have been broiled, barbecued, roasted, fried, boiled, slow cooked, steamy & fragrant rice

Touch

warm water, rubber gloves, sudsy water, gritty floors, sticky counters, scraping food from plates into the trash, a smooth broom handle as you sweep up, food textures: Silky butter, spicy or peppery heat, crumbly bread, soggy vegetables in sauce, crunchy fresh veggies or fruit, flavorful meats, smooth sauces, the crunch of nuts in a salad, bitter or sour lemons, etc, a cold glass of water or milk, putting warm dishes from the dishwasher away, wet cloths/tea towels, steam, hot coffee mugs, an accidental cut of the knife, pain, stinging burns or scaldings, sweeping crumbs from the counter into your hand, scrubbing at dried on food with a sponge, holding metal cutlery, a wine glass, patting a napkin to the lips, drying hands on a tea towel, washing hands, kneading dough with the hands, floury hands, gritty or sticky hands, the ginger handling of cold, raw meat, reaching out to touch another's hand at the diner table, warm dinner rolls in the hand, ice cubes against the lips, a burnt tongue from a too-hot food or beverage

Helpful hints:

--The words you choose can convey atmosphere and mood.

Example 1:

"Sorry I'm late," Paul said, setting his briefcase on the floor next to the kitchen island. A plate waited for him on the spotless counter: green beans, mashed potatoes and perfectly roasted beef lay in a ruin of congealed gravy. Amy faced the sink, silent, her stiff neck and the force of her scrubbing clearly conveying her mood.


Example 2:

"So nice to finally have you over," my neighbor Donna said, leading me down the hallway. My steps faltered as we reached the kitchen. Plates crusted with last night's dinner rose up in a stack next to a sink brimming with dirty dishes. A loaf of bread, open, sprawled across the sticky counter next to unlidded jars of peanut butter and jam and a half-full jug of orange juice. I winced with each crunching step on the way to the table, resisting to look down at the floor. Instead I smiled, sweeping crumbs off a chair as Donna pour coffee into what I prayed were clean mugs.

--Similes and metaphors create strong imagery when used sparingly.

Example 1: (Simile)

The tray of just-baked cookies waiting for me after school was like a warm hug after a bad day.

Example 2: (Metaphor)

As Mom swapped gossip with Auntie Marie on the phone, Gina and I watched Mount KD inch closer to eruption on the stove, waiting for the frothing pot of magma to spew noodles everywhere.

4 comments:

Marian said...

When I saw the word kitchen, it reminded me of my grandmother's kitchen in Sri Lanka. So when I read "banana tree", I thought of a real banana tree, because those grew outside her house.

Took me a moment to realize you meant the little wooden contraption that holds bananas. :)

Her kitchen also had a stone mortar and pestle for grinding spices, and a coconut scraper. And I'm going to stop here because this is making me way too nostalgic.

Thanks for another inspiring post, Angela and Becca!

Maomie said...

Hi, that's a cool post! :) Love the various descriptive terms which we lack.

Kelly said...

I spent more time than usual this week in the kitchen for Thanksgiving preparations! :0)
Great entry!

PJ Hoover said...

Kitchens are perfect! Especislly around this time of year!

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