This kitchen is what sold me on my apartment in Larchmont, and convinced me to become a bridge and tunnel person (that's what New Yorkers call non-Manhattanites who have to travel over a bridge or through a tunnel to get to the city). My two kitchens in the city were dinky compared to this one, which is certainly not large but it's functional, inviting and it gets great morning light from a Northeast facing window. It takes me the better part of an hour to get to work, but I have room to cook and bake and make huge messes. It's worth it.
The stove has big chunky indestructible-seeming grates on the burners. The gas oven squeals an alarming and vicious high pitch when it's on (I still haven't called the Super about this) but there's a nice bright, still working light over the stovetop that is often the only artificial light I leave on. I love the way it glows invitingly at night when I wander in to put the kettle on for tea.
There's open shelving and a big swath of mostly uncluttered and usable stainless steel countertop in my kitchen. The only appliances I keep on top of the counter are a standing mixer (the love of my life) and a coffee grinder (stolen from the SAVEUR Test Kitchen). Tucked underneath the counter is an induction burner (not sure how it works, pretty sure it's magic), a slow cooker (there is nothing finer than coming home to a one-pot meal your slow cooker's been mulling over all day), and the largest cast iron soup kettle in tarnation. Floor to ceiling shelves hold all my cookbooks and a TV. Yes, I have a TV in my kitchen; I got addicted to that concept while baking cookies one holiday season when I decided I had to be able to glance up at the Grinch stealing Christmas while I made what felt like forty thousand ginger snaps.
You can't beat a galley design for efficiency. My fridge, sink and stove are aligned in that ideal workflow triangle you always hear about. I can wash vegetables at the sink and spin around to blanch them in boiling water on the stove. Or, conversely, I can stop butter from browning or broccoli from getting mushy by spinning away from the stove to submerge a bowl in my ice-water filled sink.
You get what you're given in a rented kitchen. You can't change light fixtures or rip up the floor or put in a new faucet. One of this particular rented kitchen's happy accidents is lots of wall space. I've taken full advantage by tacking up a bulletin board (it's crammed with recipes, bumper stickers and postcards) and a large metal rack that's part art and part function; it holds my grandmother's egg beater (egg beaters are kinda awesome), heavy, flower-shaped iron trivets from Ikea, and a growing collection of decidedly nonfunctional but frilly aprons.