Just before Labor Day weekend, as I gathered my ingredients to make my grandmother's piccalilli, I came face-to-face with the state of affairs in my pantry cupboard.
I warn you, it wasn't pretty:
I was sure, absolutely sure, I had a jar (if not two) of pickling spice somewhere in there - a key ingredient in piccalilli - but what I didn't have was the time (or the fortitude) to tackle this particular organizational challenge at that particular time.
And then yesterday, oddly enough, amidst head colds and abcessed teeth, I found it strangely comforting to immerse myself in such an all-consuming project as this.
An hour or two later, here's what I had:
Much better! (And, just for the record, so are the head colds and sore teeth.)
I don't have a separate pantry yet, so I use this double cupboard to hold our baking ingredients, teas, coffee and such. I say yet, because we are - meaning, Bill is - working on a set of shelves beneath the basement stairs for the overflow. (You can see I tend toward overflow.) And, it might not surprise you to learn that there were not one - not two! - but two and half jars of pickling spice in there!
Where did it all go, you might wonder? Well, some of it was boxed up for donation, while the items that had surpassed their shelf life were chucked. I am glad to have this done as I will be making up a holiday baking list very soon! As I worked, I noted things we need more of (cinnamon) and things we need to use up (chocolate chips).
As you can also see in the top picture, I had an extraordinary amount of tea boxes tucked away in there. The lot of them were rather precariously stacked and shamefully underused. Bill had a good idea for my stash - a tea drawer!
This is a drawer off the kitchen island that actually opens into our dining room. It used to hold manuals and warranties, but it fit all my tea boxes just perfectly!
Bill says I can't buy any more tea till I use up a box and make room ... of course he says that with a wink and a smile. ;)
Well, it's chilly and gray here today, and we've had a long morning at the dentist, so I'm off to make myself a warm and soothing cup of tea. Lemon Lift, I think it will be - how about you?
Cheers, my friends!