Someone recently asked me for pictures of my pantry. With the addition of my wonderful new grain mill (and a bulk order of wheat!), my "pantry" is still in the midst of being organized again. I say "pantry" since I store food in my kitchen cupboards, on our enclosed porch, and in our bedroom!
I will take pictures soon, though. But for starters, here is a handy tip for storing food: Glass jars.
I love the quart- and pint-sized glass jars for smaller storage. Salt, sugar, rice, beans, poppy seeds, xylitol, vanilla extract, popcorn, etc.
The canning lid and ring keeps the jar air-tight. Sometimes you can find white plastic lids that will fit these jars, which is perhaps more convenient than dealing with a lid and ring (though probably lightly less air-tight).
I love the see-through aspect of using jars, and I think glass looks much prettier than plastic! Most foods do store better away from sunlight, however, so it's better to keep glass jars behind cupboard doors (or in a dark basement -- ours is too icky though!).
For larger-volume items, gallon-sized glass jars are wonderful! I have wheat berries, cream of wheat cereal, quinoa, bulgur wheat, and barley in gallon-sized jars. I'm on the lookout for more of the gallon-size jars, as they are SO convenient!
Glass gallon jars don't always have air-tight lids, but if you fold a couple of layers of waxed paper or plastic and place it between the jar and the lid (and then screw the lid on) it will make a tighter seal. :)
When you frequent garage sales or thrift stores, extra measuring cups can be found quite inexpensively. Leaving a half-cup scoop in the jar saves time and dishes! :)
More perks: Glass is easier to clean and sterilize than plastic, and won't leach chemicals into your food. Glass jars (at least, the quart-size) are very inexpensive and can often be found for free! :)
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