Sunday, September 12, 2010

reorganizing the pantry

Summer is all but over and Fall is just around the corner.  At this time of year I like to start cleaning out my clothes closet for the change in seasons.  I also go through my pantry so that I can re-organize it.

There are two reasons that I do this.  The first is that things just get messy.  With various different people putting things away the organization slowly dwindles down to nil; finding what you're looking for becomes a challenge.  Especially in my pantry where there is a side "wing" making some things harder to see.

The other reason is that I like to make note of my ingredients, see if I need to replenish anything, and make sure that I am using what I have on hand.  Beans and other dry goods are best if used within a year, I find that beyond that they start to get "old" and may not cook well.

I also like to take this time to check my stock of dehydrated ingredients, tomatoes, peppers, other vegetables, and fruit, so that I can take advantage of the summer bounty if I need more.  My herb garden isn't producing in huge quantities yet, but in past years I've also dehydrated herbs to use during the year. This is a great way to  know we are getting organic, pesticide-free foods that we can use during the upcoming year.

If your pantry is looking a little disorganized, consider taking some time (it doesn't usually take very long) to re-arrange the contents so that you can find things easily.  This would also be a perfect time to start pruning your pantry of non-food ingredients such as HFCS, BHT and TBHQ.  Knowing what you have on hand will help you reduce overbuying such as when you buy 3 jars of olives because you can't find the 2 jars that are already there.  It will also help you better plan meals for the upcoming busy Fall season.

1 comment:

MidnightAgenda said...

True that. I love cleaning out my pantry. It helps me decided what to make for meals in the near future.