Day 2: How To Stay Cool, Calm and Collected in the Kitchen

Guest expert: PhD Researcher and Former Royal Marine, Saul Cuttell

One of the top questions I get asked is ‘how do you stay calm in the kitchen?’. This is normally followed by stories of flames, spills, broken plates and raised voices!

When preparing a meal or baking a cake, you can’t escape the fact that multiples things will be happening at the same time and you have to somehow align all of those things so at the end of it you have a deliciously hot meal to tuck in to.

“Seeing as I cook for a living and me saying ‘prep and everything will be fine’ might not cut it! I’ve brought in PhD Researcher and Ex Royal Marine Saul Cuttell. If anyone knows how to keep calm in a crisis, it’s this man!”

For Day 2 of this challenge, I want you to read the following 6 tips, and try to apply them when you’re cooking.

It was great speaking to Saul because he and I come at things very differently (and to be honest I might be taking Saul’s tips and applying them to parts of my life because I might be calm in the kitchen but I tend to be wilder in my day-to-day routine haha!).

We both however get the same delicious results and it goes to show that there’s not a one size fits all when it comes to the kitchen. So with our 6 tips I hope you find some inspiration.

You’ve got a chef and a former marine cheering you on! Let’s do this!

Practice makes perfect

The Rebalance Chef – Practice makes perfect so I always say to not be overly critical of yourself when something goes wrong. It doesn’t help and often it makes you not want to continue what your doing rather than analysing what went wrong and applying those learnings next time.


Saul Cuttell – My first tip is perspective and realising if it really matters. So for instance if a knife drops on the floor or a spoon, what’s the worse thing  that’s going to happen? Ok it’s going to drop on the floor. Realistically that all comes down to your perspective on life doesn’t it. Some people have one perspective and others another.

How do you view the world? For me I just go ‘o well it’s fallen on the floor there’s nothing to worry about’.

Music and Dancing

The Rebalance Chef – The kitchen is the heart of the home and your stomach. It’s meant to be a cosy place where you and others come together to eat, laugh and have fun. For me it makes sense to always have music on because it just adds to it all/is a crucial part. Have a dance, singalong, maybe open a bottle of wine or have another favourite drink around. You’ll feel relaxed and happy wiggling your butt to your favourite songs and you’ll find everything just becomes a lot easier.


Saul Cuttell – I’m quite organised and structured in my approach. If I’m going to do something in the kitchen then I do it by the book. I look at what the ‘rules are’ of the recipe and I’ll look at how I can do it in an efficient manner.

So if I’m cooking some fish in the oven I’ll be cooking the rice on the hob at the same time to try and make it coalesce at the same time. I prepare myself before I’m going to do something and I research it.

Up Your Food Knowledge

The Rebalance Chef – When I cook, it’s like a symphony. Everything aligns to create the final meal. The fridge is thrown open, I grab a load of things and create. BUT I can only do this because I know what ingredients are what, how they taste, and what will go together. If you can’t find an ingredient for whatever reason, knowing a suitable alternative stops you from flapping because you’ve got a plan b, c, d, e…you get the gist 😉

Give Yourself Time

Saul Cuttell – Giving yourself enough time is really important. I give myself time with a lot of things not only when it comes to cooking but with daily life. For example if I’ve only got 30mins, I’m not going to start a three course meal. Each time I make sure I have enough time to sleep, eat properly (I can get quite stroppy otherwise haha!) and to write a journal detailing my thoughts, emotions etc. Again it helps with perspective.

How are you feeling? Think you can do it? I know you can! And here’s some nature to make you feel even calmer.

Let’s Connect!

Along with the daily journal posts here, each Wednesday at 12pm GMT I’ll be going live on my instagram @therebalancechef to recap on the week’s progress and show you around my kitchen. Depending on the weather you might even meet my rescue hens!

The main point of this challenge is to have fun with it, learn new skills and refresh old ones.

I want to see your creations so don’t forget to tag me and show off what you’ve been doing!

I’m taking part in the Rebalance May Cookery Challenge! Check it out here

Connect with Saul!

You can find and follow Saul on Twitter here and by clicking on the icon below.

For his research work, you can find the link here.

Day 3 Preview

Ingredients Matter

I’m not sure when it happened and like many things it was probably a gradual thing over time, but at some point us modern humans lost that connection with our food.

We’ve forgotten about seasonal eating and got used to have what we want, when we want it. We’ve also somehow managed to demonise food and create a world of mixed messaging.

So I’m saying NO! I’m taking a stand and declaring mutiny against all of the keto, paleo, caveman, raw food and whatever else ‘diets’ and rebalancing the wavelengths!

Ingredients matter. Where they come from matters. How they’re grown matters. Why? Because it affects everything from your health, to your bank balance, to your local communities and to your planet.