Spring Cleaning

With daylight savings springing us forward and with spring incoming, we took our opportunity to clean and organize our kitchen a little bit. A clean, organized, and well stocked pantry is the key to any Feasts for Two.

As crazy as it sounds, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with pantry essentials. There are so many spice racks on the market, but they’re generally filled loaded with a bunch of herbs and spices that you never end up using anyways. We recommend you only stock items that are part of your daily cooking routine. This will not only save some space (especially if you are just like us and live in a tiny apartment!) but also save you a ton of money.

After hibernating for the winter, our pantry was getting quite empty. We found ourselves always having to run around when meal planning to gather items we needed rather then having them readily available. Personally, we find that glass storage containers are the way to go! Not only do they make it simple to track how much we have on hand, but they are also less wasteful when you can buy in bulk and eliminate packaging.

As we currently do not live in our ‘forever home’ and did not feel like spending a bunch of money, we got our different sizes jars at the Dollar Store. But find whatever containers you like and roll with it. It costed us around 30$ or less to completely feel our drawers and cupboards with every size of jar we needed. The IKEA DROPPAR Collection is another reasonably priced, simple option.

Pantry Organization - Dry Goods
Pantry Organization - Dry Goods (2)Here is what can be found at all times in our pantry:

Dry Goods

  • Tomato Paste
  • Dried Tomato
  • Coconut Milk
  • Chickpeas

Grains & Pasta

  • Short Grain Rice
  • Rice Noodle
  • Lentils
  • White Beans
  • Spaghetti
  • Penne/Rigatoni
  • Orrichete/Shells
  • Udon
  • Quinoa

Additionally, since sweet treats is pretty much the base of our very own food pyramid, we also have a dedicated baking section to our pantry where you will always find:

  • Different types of flours: All Purpose Flour, Buckwheat Flour, Whole Wheat Flour, Semolina Flour, Corn Flour and Rice Flour
  • Corn Startch
  • Corn Meal
  • Sugar
  • Brown Sugar
  • Honey
  • Maple syrup
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Baking Powder

Now onto the dreaded spices! We took some inspiration from Spiceology in formatting the labels for our spices using the DYMO 12966 Mechanical Embosser. Sure, it may be a little “Pinteresty”, but we think the organization really helps to keep us inspired while cooking.

Pantry Organization - Label
Pantry Organization - Label Sticking
Pantry Organization - Label (2)
Pantry Organization - Spices Organization

Here are our must-have spices selection:

  • Kosher Salt
  • Sea Salt
  • Fried Shallot
  • Garlic
  • Dried Seaweed
  • Bay
  • Togarashi
  • Nutmeg
  • Juniper
  • Coriander
  • Oregano
  • Turmeric
  • Dried Mushrooms
  • Curry Paste
  • Sesame
  • Cinnamon
  • Star Anise
  • Szechuan
  • Peppercorn
  • Clove
  • Fennel
  • Cumin
  • Smoked Paprika
  • Saffron

Since we totally understand how life can get in the way, and you may not know where to start we made it nice and easy for you! We created a downloadable/printable Pantry Essentials List to help you build an array of resources for yourself. The better prepared you are, the more enjoyable cooking will be. Use this as a starting point, and add to it or remove as you see fit. What’s important is that you’re ready to cook when the inspiration strikes.

Happy Spring Cleaning!

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