As technology evolved, the iron stove was introduced. These stoves rather than being an open fire were closed in and this made cooking more efficient. By the late 19th century gas cooking was much more common. Cities started to build pipes, sewers and other forms of infrastructure, which made life a little easier, and meant that a consistent and reliable source of gas could be had. But kitchens were still nowhere near the modern day kitchen and often the kitchen room was also used as a bathroom or sleeping room.
Now in modern times, we use the kitchen for more than just cooking food of course. It is a place for friends and family to come together and enjoy time as well as eat food together. Our modern kitchens are a reflection on our personalities and of course there still is a certain class divide just like in the good old days, but less prominent. If a person has a lot of money, such as celebrities or wealthy business people, then kitchens in their homes are usually pretty grand. But with modern designs, fitted kitchens, and lots of different ranges, most homes now have lovely kitchens and kitchen renovation certainly has taken off in recent years.
In fact, in medieval ages, peasants did not have their own kitchens. Public kitchens were used and only the rich or wealthy had their own kitchen, usually with a cook. It is a world so far removed from our modern way of life, and so fascinating. Cooking was mostly done over an open fire and was obviously a much lengthier and harder process than we are used to today. Fires were used to keep warm and to cook and food was obviously very basic. But even our earliest ancestors enjoyed sharing a meal with others and it has always been considered a social event, even in the early days of mankind.
Now we have a choice of so many designs and layouts, accessories and appliances, we can create pretty much any kitchen we want. Open plan kitchens are becoming more popular if you are lucky enough to have the space. Modern appliances and so many colours and products mean that you can have the kitchen of your dreams much easier.
Just as fashion has changed over the years, so have kitchens. Designs for modern kitchens 50 years ago were different to what we see today, with the evolution of more technology. Many influences have come from Europe especially Italy, France and Germany. Some people really like to make a statement with their kitchens and go for very bright colours, or unique appliances and accessories. Others prefer a minimalist look and feel, while others still might like the classic or traditional looks.
The middle classes would often use the kitchen as the main family room, whereas the upper classes really used it just as a kitchen and usually allowed the room to be run entirely by cooks and maids. All the things we take for granted now such as running water and sinks, electricity to boil a kettle or light the room, were not so readily available throughout history. In the very early days, people had to carry pots or jugs of water a long way.
We really have come a long way in cooking and kitchen designs. A modern kitchen is now quite different to early kitchens thanks to developments in electricity, water pipes and other materials. Today is modern kitchen includes so many functions and appliances those generations between us could never imagine. If you take a journey back over the history of the kitchen from the beginning, you can see what sort of luxury we have now.