Sunday, September 25, 2011
Today, a neighbour dropped off two grocery bags of bottled spices and herbs. One of our local ladies has passed away and the hubby is trying to simplify his kitchen cupboards... that's where the spice bottles came from.
I noticed right away that many of the spices no longer had colour. When I opened the lids, the aroma was gone or smelled musty. How old was this collection?
I went on the Club House website because many of the bottles had those labels. This is what I have been able to glean:
Check for these signs:
All recent Club House packaging reflects the current Club House logo (house with green leaves) as is shown throughout our site.
If your Club House spice bottle is glass, the spice is over 15 years old
If your Club House spice has a yellow cap and label, it is over 4 years old
If your Club House pepper has a white/cream cap, it is over 4 years old
If your Club House tin is larger than 2" tall (excluding ground black pepper), it is over 8 years old
If your Club House product does not have the Club House logo with a red and orange wave in the upper left corner, it is over 4 years old.
Product Expiry Guidelines
Your Club House products will deliver the best flavour if used within these guidelines.
Ground spices - 2 to 3 years
Whole spices - 4 years
Herbs: 1-3 years
Sesame Seeds & Poppy Seeds – 2 years
All other Seeds – 4 years
Spice Blends: 1-2 years
Pure vanilla extract: unlimited shelf life
How to Maximize Freshness
Spices and herbs that are whole maintain their freshness longer than those that are ground. If kept in airtight bottles, they will keep for a long time. Spices and herbs do not spoil but they do lose their strength. Old and weak seasonings will not deliver the taste they should.
There are three checks to use when verifying freshness: look, smell and taste. A visual check for colour fading is a good indicator of flavour loss. Taste and smell your spices and herbs; if a fresh odour or taste is not apparent, they need to be replaced.
Avoid sprinkling spices directly from the bottle over a steaming pot. Steam will get into the bottle and result in caking the content. Measure spices in a separate bowl, seal bottles and then add measured spices to pot.
Soooooo... I have a collection of 15 year old (or more) spices in the most ancient of bottles with the old labels and old coloured lids. I think I will wash the bottles out and go to my local bulk food store to start over.
Easy come-- easy go!
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
I love where I live! The coastal weather is temperate, bright and fresh. Many think we are constantly in grey fog and drizzle. That is only accurate in November.
This morning as I was taking out the trash, I was rewarded with the beautiful sight of my red rose bush with its nine blossoms. Imagine that-- nine roses, showing off in September!
I grew up in the east but in an completely different growing zone. Roses bloomed in June. If you were lucky there were a few roses to see in July but that was it. Show's over!
But here way out west, we have some gorgeous roses still doing what they do best on the last days of summer. I enjoy them and feel so blessed.
In my neighbourhood I can still see a yellow rose bush and a salmon coloured rose bush still blooming.
It really adds a lot to my walking workout! I love roses in September!
Monday, September 19, 2011
If you live near me in Victoria, British Columbia, you might recognize this title as the by-line of a wonderful produce store. Their fruit and veggies are so ripe, fresh and affordable that I get all excited about going there to shop. May I introduce The Root Cellar!
The staff is helpful and friendly and the prices are great. If I had to rename the place it would be "VARIETY Vegetables--FANTASTIC Fruit". I can purchase local produce, organic varieties, fancy items and very basic things too!
Let's just leave the name as it is, OK?
Today, after having an appointment with the dentist (yuck), I decided to treat myself to healthy food for my fridge. What started with the goal of finding some shiny zucchinis for an Italian casserole, became a delicious list of snow peas, baby plum tomatoes, fresh green beans, five avocadoes, a bunch of watercress, celery, an English cucumber and Oriental bok choy. I bought the loveliest bunch of green onions and a fresh acorn squash too! Many of these items will end up in a stir fry (our favourite) or in my brown bag lunch throughout the work week.
I've listed the vegetables I brought home. The fruits that caught my eye and jumped into my cart are: bananas, Okanagan peaches (a region of this province), cantaloupe, plums and a pear. I'm the fruit eater at this house, but I keep trying to introduce it to my better half.
My challenge for the next week is to incorporate my exciting variety of Root Cellar treasures into the menu and not allow a single thing to go bad in the crisper.
Stay tuned to see how this gal and her guy manage to enjoy the season's best -- I'll be managing my high blood pressure and he will try to ignore that he has diabetes. (That's an entirely different blog.)
I challenge you to bring home some of this year's produce instead of the prepackage and frozen veggies that are so convenient. Are you up for that double-dog dare???
What did I buy that interests you? What was in my shopping cart that you wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole?
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
I'm putting myself out there tonight... I really dislike hot dog wieners. I don't like their appearance. I dislike the odor when they boil. The taste is not to my liking and I get heartburn from them for hours after someone hosts a BBQ. (GREAT--- we're having wieners.)
I think it hit me hard one day I volunteered at my daughter's kindergarten class and we were hostessing a Hot Dog Day to raise money.
There were pots and pots of smelly frankfurters with oily circles on the top of the water. I felt sick.
Still, I helped out until 300 hot dogs were wrapped in miles of aluminum foil to deliver classroom by classroom.
My Sweetie loves to shop at Costco and buy a Hot Dog as his reward for buying groceries. They are one of his favourite things for lunch.
So I ask, what food do you dislike the most????
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