Best before

Everyone should move house once a decade or so, if only to clear out their spice cupboards.  I am moving house myself at the moment (did I say?) and spent part of last week on an archaeological dig in my kitchen.

Here are some of my finds:

Spice Jars

Yes, indeed, the Celery Salt was best before December 1998 .  I used to drink Bloody Marys but got bored of them after a while.  In 1997, that would have been. What can I say? At least the jars are clearly labelled.  My grandmother had a spice tin labelled


in a tauntingly take-a-few-risks-and-live-a-little kind of way. Hell, she had foostuffs so old we took them to the Museum of Packaging when we cleared out the house. And an immune system that put the original plans for the strategic defence initiative to shame.

So a mere, um, 12 years is nothing to be ashamed of.

Nothing at all.  It’s not as if I’ve been using it after all.

Who likes celery salt anyway.

Now… where did I pack the vodka?

4 responses to “Best before

  1. Oh, the things you find…

    It’s quite alarming what strange things lurk at the back of the cupboard. I think our scariest was out of date custard powder. Thing is…I love custard (but can’t make it from scratch), so how did it go unused? I suspect it was hiding behind something with tomatoes in.

  2. At least the ginger? had some sort of label on it. There are jars in the spice cupboard that have no label and just some sort of powder in them. I tend to ignore those when cooking.

  3. Hiding is the only explanation, Singing Librarian. That or wormholes in the kitchen.

    Phil – you make me feel much better. At least all of mine are labelled. Or now they are.

  4. Out of date herbs a fine…they just lose their flavour on the pantry shelf over decades.

    I try to buy Indian herbs, chilli powder etc from Indian corner shops (not common in Cheshire) they are the price of a couple of Schwartz packets but contain a hundred fold of spice/herbs so I don;t feel too bad throwing away a quarter of a pack that’s 3years out of date and only due to the ‘potency’ dropping off over time.

    Paprika is one of the worst for losing flavour to the point that the ‘waste’ is worth it.

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