I just realized that in all the time we’ve spent together I’ve never given you a tour of my kitchen. We’ll save the full tour for another day, but what I wanted to share is that my fridge is my spice rack. I know that most spices do best away from direct light if they’re not going to be used immediately, and the side of my fridge is just perfect especially as the designer of this kitchen back in 1963 or so sort of forgot drawers.
Since I am lucky to live near a store that offers an amazing array of spices in bulk (ie: buy as much or as little as you like), I can buy as needed but I almost always overbuy. I mean, a mere teaspoon of something won’t even jog the scales, so I have to buy a little more.
Those littles add up.
The thing is, even when I don’t need any spices I find the draw of the bulk department irresistible. The folks who work there are kind and patient and very knowledgable, and I often find I just need a smitch or dab of something or other just because it smells so good. They sell individual spices and herbs, but they also sell things like smoked salts, dry mushrooms, blends and rubs… you get the idea. See?:
The side of my fridge isn’t anything like that, really. But, once or twice a year I try to go through all the accumulated tiny bags (sometimes two or three deep under their magnet!) and toss anything that has lost its zing. I don’t feel too bad, they don’t actually go in the trash. I figure its organic so I toss any leavings in a flower pot or in the yard. Why not!
Any unground (is that a word?) things like whole cloves, allspice, fennel, I test and if they’re fresh enough I keep ’em. The rest I toss (and the bags get recycled, of course!). Or, at least I will. This is my plan for tomorrow. I guess it might be a cheat to write about it before actually doing it, but there you have it. Here’s how the fridge looks now:
So, I say again, my plan for tomorrow is to go through all the tiny bags, keep or toss as appropriate, and make a list of “must haves” to replenish. I’ll update you soon!
Any spices you must have? Ever curious…
And, of course, a very happy New Year to all – good health and comfort and joy to you and yours!