Life at kitchen central with Simi Sara

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      Simi Sara spends a lot of time in the studio kitchen as the host of Citytv CityCooks (Monday to Friday at 6 p.m.). Yet the kitchen is also where you’ll find her at home, baking cakes, cookies, and muffins. “It’s my hobby,” she says. “It’s the only way I relax.” The cohost of Breakfast Television (Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.) lives on an acreage in Ladner with her husband, 11-year-old daughter, eight-year-old son, and chocolate lab, Cocoa.

      What made this the right house for you and your family?

      “There’s a great amount of space for the kids to run around outside”¦.The house has room—it’s about 3,000 square feet—but the rooms are all smaller. It’s more intimate. Previously, we had built a house which had 18-foot high ceilings in the family room. It was a very open floor plan, and I found that I really didn’t like it. It was too loud”¦.What I love about this house we have now is that there are spaces for quiet.”

      What’s the kitchen like?

      “It’s got a lot of room—a big island, seating at the island. The cooktop is in the island, so therefore when you’re cooking, you can still talk to people”¦.It’s got a double sink, slate floors, granite countertops, stainless steel sub-zero”¦. It’s sort of the hub around the whole house.”

      Did you have it custom-made?

      “No. We bought the house like that [over six years ago]. When we came to look at the house, I remember walking into the kitchen, and I turned to him [her husband] and said, ”˜Okay. Sold. Done. Take it.’ ”

      What’s your favourite thing in your kitchen?

      “A glass cake dome that sits on my counter. I don’t feel good unless it’s full of something I have made. My Sundays are usually devoted to putting a lot of good things under the dome.”

      How’s your outdoor living space?

      “We have about a 1,500-square-foot deck that runs right around the house. In the summertime that becomes our family room.”¦The steps go down to a concrete patio with a fire pit. We entertain all through that area.”

      How do you describe your home style?

      “Is there a young kids’ style?...My living room, right now, from one end to another, is a tent. My son has built a fort and he won’t let me take it down”¦I figure why fight it? In a couple [of] years I can get down to shaping the rooms as I want”¦.not a lot of clutter”¦simple, comfortable furniture that is neat and clean.”

      What’s your most extravagant purchase?

      “Probably my mattress [a pillow top]. It was the best of the best when we bought it a couple years ago, and it was so worth it.”

      What’s your best budget find?

      “My $5 vegetable peeler that I bought off the streets of New York City.”

      What’s your most sentimental piece?

      “My mother’s wooden spoon. She passed away”¦I don’t like to use it too often, because I don’t want it to break. So if I’m making something that I feel like I need to put a lot of love into, I usually take that out.”