We're heading toward the New Year now, and like most of you, there is a certain amount of cleaning and organizing here at the Circle B Kitchen that goes along with those good intentions for the aforementioned new year. As the snow continues to fall outside (can you believe it??), I was going through the pantry and thought it might be a swell idea to share with you my pantry philosophy.
Well, yes, I do have a pantry philosphy of sorts. I didn't grow up in the depression, and I've never really gone without the basics in life, but for some reason I'm obsessed with backstock. I must know that even if I have a full jar of mayo or peanut butter or mustard in the fridge, I have another one waiting in the wings.....just in case. Perhaps I was a chipmunk in a past life.
The other part of this perhaps warped philosophy is that I like to know that at any given moment there are perhaps 5 or 6 meals I could whip up on a moment's notice straight from my fridge/freezer/pantry. What if I unexpectedly need to feed 8 people tonight and have no time to get to the store? No problem. See, I like that. What if I get a craving for say, my "One-Pan Chicken and Sausage Roast"? Got it. Oh, and I can serve it with roasted potatoes for 8 people. And dessert. I really like that. It keeps me sane and happy in life. I can whip up mac n cheese for the kids or quesadillas or a salmon dinner - no stress. Next time I'm at the store, I replenish what's been used. Sure, things fall through the cracks, I'll forget something, and the world collapses around me, but in time I recover and feel better once things are stocked up again.
So, today I share with you my list of pantry/freezer/fridge staples that I keep on hand at all times. Granted, this is not an exhaustive list of my pantry/freezer/fridge, just a basic list of things that are there on any given day. My cooking safety net, if you will. You might think to use this as a guide to create your own obsessive world of backstock insanity. Please feel free to personalize this list according to your own particular cooking needs and space allotments.
So without further ado, my List of Pantry Essentials for the rest of you culinary squirrels and chipmunks out there. Oh, and if you think I've forgotten something terribly essential, or there are things in your pantry we should all know about, please leave a comment. Oh, and Henry, I didn't mention the liquor cabinet on purpose!