Leslie Pantry April 05th, 2018 - 12:25:04
Getting Started - Cleaning Out The Pantry Now that you have planned your pantry for function, it is now time to get started on reorganizing! Once you have established your pantry area, youll want to start by removing everything - I know, I know - dont freak - by removing everything will be able to help you get started and in order. 1. Empty your pantry completely - moving everything into boxes, tabletops and/or counter tops. Discard or recycle anything that you find is spoiled, expired, stale or otherwise unusable. 2. Before setting about to put things in order - you are going to have fun by disassembling whatever food cupboards you currently use. Look at everything as you take it out and consider the following: How long has it been since you used that item? For example, Herbs - loose a great deal of flavor after 6 months even in a dark, cool space. While youre at it check expiration date and throw away accordingly. Remember the rule: When in doubt, Throw it out!
I have found that it is best to try to reorganize your pantry when you are alone, or have a block of time available for you to concentrate and complete the project quickly! Remember to store cleaning products and chemicals away from your food items! Keep items that you use the most often in front and readily visible! Stack cans, jars and other items so that the labels can be easily read. Always be on the lookout for new organization aids such as: baskets, wire baskets, adjustable racks, stacking containers, and more that will improve your pantry organization. Make a "guest" or "refreshment" shelf to keep crackers, dips, chips, drink mixes and other items handy so you are ready to have an impromptu party or your childrens friends. Keep paper/pencil and/or a small whiteboard in your pantry. You could also paint a chalkboard on the back of your pantry door. You will be surprised how this will encourage family members to add what they would like to the inventory or what they have noticed is out-of-stock.
The easiest meal for me is spaghetti and my family loves it, so you will always find spaghetti fixings in my pantry -- either the ingredients to make sauce or pre-made sauce, noodles and parmesan cheese (fridge storage). As well, I keep some ground chicken or sausage in my freezer to add to the sauce or serve on the side to accommodate the meat haters in my family. I actually like to keep pantry staples for several possible meals at the ready "just in case." I always have a jar of pesto, mushrooms, pasta, macaroni and cheese, refried beans, canned chicken, tuna, peanut butter and jelly, cans of fruit, kidney and/or pinto beans for chili, and usually a smattering of "cream ofs" are in there too. Thats how you want to think when stocking your pantry. Think about the foods your family likes to eat and meals made in a hurry -- stock those items as you can afford them. Your pantry staples may differ, but should meet your familys unique tastes.
To add a touch of utilitarian elegance, the inclusion of an old fashioned butlers pantry to your kitchen will fit the bill. A butlers pantry will contain your fine china, crystal, silverware, serving platters, and other items used when you entertain guests. Usually located between the kitchen and dining room, this area allows the butler (or you) to prepare the dining room, serve guests, and perform preliminary cleanup without getting in the way of the kitchen staff (or you, again). If you include a sink and mini-fridge in the butlers pantry, it greatly enhances your ability to entertain, and not be stuck in the kitchen. As you design your new kitchen or remodel your old kitchen, you want to make the end product as efficient as possible. If you have any questions during the design phase, talk to a professional kitchen designer with your concerns. They can help you to optimize your space, or increase the space easily. The inclusion of a pantry will make your kitchen more efficient, and if your existing kitchen does not have a pantry, doing your best to include one will increase your overall satisfaction with your new kitchen. And that is why you are creating a new kitchen in the first place.