08 February 2011

A Tale of a Spice Cabinet Decluttered

T-2 weeks until we move. 


Two moves in one year lends itself to some awesome stuff-cleansing. We have three weeks be out of our duplex, so I'm packing more intentionally than every before. Today's focus. The elusive...
Spice Cabinet
Okay, mine wasn't really that bad.
 (Image courtesy of Collin Anderson on flickr)
I must have discarded all my duplicates during the last move; I noticed I'm down to one small jar of cinnamon. I distinctly remembering having up to four at one point. The extra seasoning salts are gone too. 

*insert a little self pat on back here*

Not so fast. There is more work to do.

Today, I took a look at the Spice Cabinet with different eyes ~ eyes that could read expiration dates.  Anything that expired prior to the fall of the Economy in America.... Gone.   

Starting with... the "gourmet" Dill Weed in the glass jar. I'm sure I paid at least $6 for it.  The plastic safety seal was still intact, but it expired shortly after Pope John Paul II. Rather than feel the guilt of a dumb purchase every time I open the spice cabinet, I sprinkled it in with Tiny's nasty diapers and left it to stew until friday when the trash man comes.  

It seems like every kitchen should have Mrs. Dash, Parsley Flakes, Basil Leaves and the Ground twins:  Nutmeg & Cinnamon?  However, our menu has changed significantly in the last 4 years, and I rarely use these so mine were all expired.  Since they were in plastic containers, I emptied them, secured the lids to the jars with glue, and voila ~ instant play food for Princess Drool and her big sister, Princess Destructo. They can't read yet, so the expiration dates don't seem to bother them.

Here's a BEFORE picture of their kitchen.  Note, the "spices" in alphabetical order:

Enter the Tot-Chef to cook up something from scratch.  She's not so good at putting everything back in order, but I must say, her "soup" was pretty tasty. I could learn a thing or two from that kid! 

  She even does dishes! Must have learned that from the Daddyman.

Back to the task at hand..

I found one last expired jar buried in the back. The Cream of Tarter. I'm sure I've never used it for the intended purpose, but as an ingredient for homemade playdough, although expired, it's a keeper. Which leaves me with this.... here is the "after" picture:

Spice Shelf

My Spice Cabinet is more of a Spice Shelf after today's decluttering.  Except for the oils on the right and a
few "kid things" like sprinkles on the left, there is nothing buried behind the Italian seasoning or the salt.

From now on, I will keep: salt & pepper, italian seasoning, whole garlic cloves, cumin, sage, vanilla, Moroccan rub, and cinnamon... and maybe the pie spices until they expire. ~ Plain & Simple As That

Has anyone tried the McCormick Recipe Inspirations? I'm thinking that might be my ticket to gourmet cooking.

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  1. Great ideas! I do the same thing. I feel guilty over little kitchen items that I buy and never use. As a result, I have packs of gourmet coffee that I will never use.

  2. I've heard coffee grounds make great (although expensive) compost.. and if it is still in bean form, you could use it in a small mug as a pencil holder the way they do at Starbucks.

    DON'T try using them under candles like you would little marbles or rocks though. Coffee beans are highly flammable. I'll share the story about how I know that one day over tea and scones :)