If you can’t Stand the Heat, get out of the Kitchen
Operations Manager, Rachael Maccagnano, has always run a tight ship at Comma-Q and her work space reflects her ability to juggle multiple tasks. Having always been fascinated by turn of the century homesteads she decided to focus her MTQBattical research on primitive work spaces on farms and ranches. Rachael wanted to find out if the homesteads that were being built in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s in Montana were using new ideas to improve productivity in kitchens.
Rachael identified two historic homes to conduct her research. She first traveled to Deer Lodge to visit the Grant-Kohrs Homestead that runs as a living history ranch operated by the National Park Service. She then traveled back to Big Sky to the Crail Ranch Homestead that was built in 1902 by Augustus Franklin Crail and was subsequently occupied by the Crail family for nearly half a century before being turned into a museum.
Like Rachael’s work space at Comma-Q a lot of things happened in homestead kitchens. In addition to food preparation they were also used for laundry, bathing, and dairy and meat processing. Rachael gained an understanding of the evolution of the modern day kitchen. She also discovered that unlike modern kitchens, these homestead work spaces weren’t deliberately designed and didn’t contain specialty equipment. There weren’t any blenders or food processors, but there were early glimpses of innovation that improved efficiency, and fostered creativity and profitability.