Not too long ago, a variety of spices used to clutter my kitchen shelves and drawers. I kept adding more spices thinking what if I wanted to make a certain dish and didn’t have it on hand! I had everything from Cream of Tartar to Saffron, yes, the real kind, in my spice cabinet.
As life became busier I found myself with less time to make exotic dishes and preffered to stick to mostly family favorites. I rarely used the myriad of spices so they spent most of their time on the back of the shelf, slowing losing their charm and use. So my spice cabinet got a serious clean out. I got rid of all the expired spices that lost its fragrance and color.
I take on a minimalist approach to spices these days. I only buy a number of spices that I know I will use regularly. I buy them in small quantity, mostly from bulk bins and replenish them as needed. If a recipe calls for something that I don’t have, I try to come up with a substitute, leave it out or buy only in the quantity I need.
Here are my tips for a neat spice cabinet-
- Find out what spices your family uses regularly and buy them from bulk bins as much as you can. Buying spices from bulk bins keep them fresh.
- If you don’t have access to bulk bins, you can order spices in bulk from online and store them in your fridge. You can keep a small quantity in a jar in your cabinet and replenish from the fridge as needed.
- Keep your spices in glass jars. I use and reuse glass jars from jams etc. You can use canning jars too.
- Keep spices away from heat, light and moisture to maintain quality.
- Whole spices last longer, I buy whole peppercorns, Cinnamon, clove, cardamom and nutmeg and grind them as needed. A little of these spices go a long way.
- I use a mortar and pestle to grind spices.
- A frugal tip, a little spice goes a long way, so use them wisely.
I only have a handful of spices that adorn my spice cabinet these days. I love how neat they look and how easy it is to keep them organized.