Mennonite Girls Can Cook is a collection of recipes which were posted daily for a period of ten years from 2008 to 2018. We have over 3,000 delicious recipes that we invite you to try. The recipes can be accessed in our recipe file by category or you can use the search engine.

Recipe Search

A Peek into Marg's Kitchen

It's always fun to peek into someone's kitchen.  Today I will share some nooks and crannies that will possibly make you smile.  Our home is more than just a kitchen, it's a place where people come together to share life. 

A hallway from the back door brings you right into our kitchen.  And I love to hear the kids walk through the back door and say..."It sure smells good."  As you can see the kitchen flows into the family room giving me a bird's eye view on all the activity.  My cabinets are solid oak from the 90's era.  Any home interior expert would say..."they need to go."  But for now...there are other important things.  Our home is an L-shaped kitchen with an open floor concept which gives room for family and friends.   I also love the windows facing west which give for natural lighting.

The kitchen island expresses who we are, it's functional, practical and the granite counter top serves as a beautiful place to cook and bake or fold laundry, with five bar stools tucked underneath.

Off to the side of our kitchen is a rectangular wooden table with 2 leaf extensions from the ends which can seat fourteen adults comfortably with maybe a squeeze, but that creates the energy.

As you can see, there is lots of natural light and the large patio doors swing open to our back yard where we love to entertain winter and summer.   A natural gas fire pit adds just the extra touch of warmth to any event. This is my happy place.

In the summer our back yard opens up to serve many guests for many celebrative festivities.

Here's a more formal table setting for adults.  This table setting was prepared for Judy's 65th birthday in January.  I have to mention something funny about my husband as he was helping me serve.

While serving, he whispered to me in disgust, "You can't use these old pot holders.  They look horrible. Don't you have something better?"  Of course I had nice new pot holders.  So I gave them to him and he said, "They don't feel  right."  Meanwhile he burnt his hands and I said, "That's why we love the good old used ones because they flow with our hands."  So much for pretty potholders.

When I'm not entertaining, my dining room table can be used as an office.  It lends itself to a great place to spread out invoices, statements and organize them into folders.

A large pantry, with roll out cabinets is perfect and I love my double door fridge with the freezer below.  I like the freezer below except when a toddler opens it and the ice cream melts. I appreciate my double baking ovens with its electric glass cook top.  I value the sleek look of the stove and it's easy to wipe clean.  Just don't burn any sugar on the elements. They stain permanently. 

My large pantry serves more than one purpose.  Other than just storage it becomes a place where children love to explore.  One shelf is designated for children and sometimes I need to nudge them gently to find some other places to play.

My Island is the hub of our kitchen.    It is used for everything that you could imagine.  A Seacco coffee machine, is able to brew you a freshly ground cup of coffee from John's own signature blend which he roasts in his shop.  

A simple child's chair is attached (chicco)  which is so practical.   And what I love about this is that there are no legs attached and it doesn't take up a lot of space.  Plunk the little one in it and you are set.  Easy to clean up and it's perfect for this stage of life.

The island is built with pull out drawers with full extensions.   I love this one drawer for my tupperware bowls with one compartment only for lids.  It's easy to keep organized, when I don't have toddlers, but for now they are having fun.   Obviously, they are both pulling in the wrong direction.

With three young children, safety is a must, so we installed an iron safety gate around the fireplace.  It's taken away the anxiety of seeing small children being burned. 

We have reclaimed oak hardwood flooring which came from one of our farms.  It adds a beautiful finish and I love the simplicity, as they are easy to wipe and clean after we've had a family event.  A large carpet gives a way for the whole family to be seated on the floor as we all watch the little ones play.  There is lots of room for tussling and tossing.

Heated tiles in the kitchen add pleasure to our soles.  Once again with little ones playing on the ground they always notice how nice and warm it is.  How many times the kids come without socks. It's just perfect. I also have a vacumm toe kick plate in the Island and in my mud room, which is a must if you consider remodeling.  

Once again, as I said, our Island is the hub...and as you can see it serves well. 
  • it can serve as a work bench for the men as they assemble rockets.
  • a baking center for two little girls who love baked oatmeal
  • a spot to grow an Easter garden
  • wide open space to unpack all the Easter ornaments.
  • serves as a buffet counter or an eating place for those hungry mouths.
  • many times it serves as a place to change a quick diaper.
  • it's also a spot that provides safety.
Last but not least, the other day I stepped out of the kitchen for a minute and came back inside with a girl on top of the island crying ... and I said "What's wrong?"  Well she had seen a spider on the floor, so as you can see this island has a special spot for all. 

Next week she'll be making Paska with me.
Our island is our gathering place.

What's your favorite spot in your kitchen?


  1. What a beautiful read with my morning coffee Marg! I've sat at the island with a hot coffee (John's brew) and a good visit with you. I've walked around that island when it's been a buffet of wonderful food, I've walked in when you've been in the middle of using that island for an everyday task. You know the art of being naturally welcoming and allowing your home to be flexible and used for whatever the moment calls for. I've sat under that big tent with friends, and kept warm by your fire for a few moments...and I've come to love your family, and have gleaned some nuggets from you along the way. Thanks for the peek....such cute kiddos and the boys are really growing up.

  2. Marg, I loved seeing these pictures. I was thinking that maybe a decorator would say there needs to be updates but your kitchen is beautiful and functional and the most important thing is that it is used .... everyday. Your home is a place where family and friends want to be because you are at the helm of that kitchen island!

  3. I also know first-hand what a warm and welcoming kitchen this is! I have sat at the island many times, enjoying good coffee and good conversation. We have laughed and we have cried there. I have seen Marg's table set beautifully for many different occasions...and was totally blown away when I arrived at her door for a life group get-together recently and found that table all decked out for a surprise birthday dinner (in my honour). I've been at several of Marg's 'tent parties', have sat around the fire pit on many occasions, and always enjoyed the yummy treats from her kitchen! Thanks for the many 'peeks' I have had into the heart of your home, Marg. I know your door is always open...and the coffee is on.

    Sent from my iPhone

  4. Your potholder episode made me smile. I have an old one made of terrycloth that looks ratty but works better than the newer, prettier (but thinner) ones. Last night it got singed by the burner flame, but I just wet it down, let it dry, and will continue to use it. It's indestructible...:)

  5. What a beautiful warm and welcoming kitchen! I can see why it is the hub in your home. We are currently thinking about putting an island in to replace a harvest table - the extra storage and counter space would be a welcome addition. I loved the picture of your "working" dining room table. Mine looks very similar on most days (when not expecting guests). We have a much smaller party tent (10 X 10) - wherever did you get that great large one? I love it! Here in SW Ontario we are supposed to have a permit to put up our small tent - can you imagine? I love that John roasts and blends his own coffee. Your grandchildren are just darling and growing so fast. I enjoyed peeking into your kitchen Marg!

  6. A very enjoyable kitchen tour and discussion. Loved the parting photo of a granddaughter helping out right on the counter. Cute!

  7. Fun to see your home. We prefer oak cabinets rather than light or painted.

  8. Your home is so warm, welcoming and well equipped for youngsters. I'm sure the young families feel most welcomed.
    If you ever consider cupboard updates, we've had very good results with a professional spray painting them. Happy Sunday and God bless!

  9. What kind of an "expert" would say to get rid of solid oak cabinets? That's sad.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.