Inspired by the Mama Bake pantry challenge, I decided to reorganise and take stock of my pantry. Although it’s a fairly large pantry, it tends to have most things on display. I thought I knew everything that was in there. I was wrong.
Most surprising was the variety of tea. Squished back into a corner behind all the long life milk (we really need to start drinking fresh milk…what is in UHU milk to make it last so long?) I found 11 varieties of tea. I have no idea how they got there or how long they’ve been there. I’m sure some have lost their potency or maybe even their flavour all together, but … of course…I can’t throw them out without checking them all. I did manage to turf some cheap coffee that I KNOW has been in my pantries (this moved with me) for at least six years. I also gathered a few things here and there that still have life left in them to take to my parents’ holiday house. You never know what’s going to get eaten down there after a long day at the beach.
A lot of the items are things that are in regular rotation – all seven types of flour are used often for a variety of purposes – but I do wonder if I need 8 tins of tomatoes in the pantry at one time. When I make my big batch baked beans the most I will need is 2 (double recipe). They do tend to get used in a variety of ways, but I still think 8 is excessive. The baked beans are probably to blame for the 11 cans of beans (of several varieties) that have squirrelled their way into the pantry over time. I also wonder if I really need five big bottles of passata stored in my pantry at one time.
I have started to meal plan recently in an effort to get a little more organised with my working week and also in hopes it will save us a little money. This challenge made me realise that we’re well overdue for some laksa, it’s about time I made some cannelloni and I should probably work on making my own curry pastes (the list of spices is longer than any other category). It really helps meal planning to know exactly what is in the cupboard and what isn’t.
The other side product of this stocktake is realising that we have 154 of different types of food in our pantry alone – some of it in multiples. How lucky are we to have access to so much food on a daily basis? It is terrible to think that there are days we stand in front of that pantry and say that there is ‘nothing to eat’. I hope this helps us to really truly value what we have and recognise (again) just how blessed we are.
When did you last stocktake your pantry? Might it be a good idea for you to take up the challenge, too?
I think I’d better stocktake the fridge and freezer next. Eeeeeeeek.