Many of my clients ask me for help in regards to their Pantry & Dried Spice shelves. I figured I would share some tips that I give to them.
Go through your Pantry and get rid of any dried spices that are more than a year old, especially if it has already been ground. Grinding spices allow certain flavors to get released, but as a spice ages, most times the flavors disintegrate.
When buying spices, I recommend only buying what you think you will use in a 6 month period, this includes Sea Salt & Pepper. While it may be cheaper to buy that monstrous bottle, by the time you actually use it all (in most cases), the flavor is gone.
I always buy Whole or Coarse Spices. This allows me to grind it fresh right before I use it. I have a little coffee grinder that I ONLY use for spices, and wipe out after every use with a paper towel so that there is no contamination of flavors. Weekly I grind my Salt & Pepper that I will be using for Catering and Personal Chef Services.
Remember Time (how long has it been @ the store, in your pantry), Temperature, Grinding, Air, all these things play huge factors in the spice game.
Before shelving your spices, just give the container a quick mark with Month & Year. It’ll make it easier for you the next round, and perhaps it will inspire you to find more recipes for those odd ball spices that you have but hardly use. Also, feel free to contact me for ideas and recipes for your odd ball spices, as I enjoy the challenge.
If you have any Questions or would like to Comment with what the oldest spice you have in your pantry is, feel free.
Have a great day!
~Seattle Chef Joe