Be prepared pantry

When you are packing up, do you think about what you have in your pantry or what you might need at the new place? Being someone that cooks I like to have the basics of meal prep on hand. I have this vision of my new home having an amazing space for my pantry goods. I want labeled glass containers Right now our kitchen is so compact we have things in different places.

What you need might vary pending on the type of meals and baking are done in your home.

My home makes corn and gluten free. 

  • Flour (If you go gluten free without xanthan gum, you will need that too.)
  • Brown and white sugar
  • Salt
  • Spices (only what you would use in about 3 months. Spices are best when they are fresh. I grind many of mine fresh.
  • Baking powder (I buy corn free from my natural food store)
  • Baking soda
  • Maple syrup
  • Tapioca starch ( I thicken sauces and other foods with since I can’t use corn starch)
  • Chocolate chips or a vegan substitute
  • Soup stock (when I get to the new place I will make it home made again.)
  • Rice
  • Cooking oil
  • Vegetable shortening
  • Dried beans/lentils
  • Gluten free/ regular pasta
  • Non dairy milk/ powdered milk
  • Seeds/nuts
  • Canned tomatoes and tomato paste
  • Canned beans (chickpeas and black beans are our go to)
  • Gluten free rolled oats
  • Canned fish
  • Onion/ dried onion flakes
  • Garlic/ garlic powder
  • Bottled lemon juice (at our home we freeze whole lemons, taking them out and defrosting them when needed. Sometimes in the microwave) I use lemon juice in both salmon melts and hummus.
  • Canned or dried fruits or vegetables
  • Sauces and condiments

You can do some easy preparation to make many things to make life a bit quicker. When my family was at home I made biscuits and homemade soup. I would make a big batch and divide it into ziplock bags enough to make 8 or so at a time. We then would add the wet ingredients and make them fresh. They were a great midday snack.

This is biscuits recipe like the one I used, mine did not have milk powder or cream of tartar. You would add milk when you would make them. You cam make them vegan and gluten free. If you are allergic to nuts you can use any dairy free milk

photo by By Gemma Stafford | May 29, 2021  She has a great website with many wonderful ideas. https://www.biggerbolderbaking.com/sage-and-cheddar-biscuits

If you are non vegan you can do mini fish melts on the biscuits Vegan could eat them with cooked beans, hummus or make vegan mini sliders.

Hope you can enjoy yummy homemade foods. I read many more people are enjoying more cooking at home with the pandemic restrictions. It would be nice to read some of your pantry dishes are or what different things you keep in your food storage.

Family Foods

Growing up we all had different foods. Some had homemade food, some had canned. We all hold memories for what we had. I know families that foraged and families that had little. This week’s blog was inspired by a video on Great depression/recession foods. This was a time when there was an economic downturn. Many goods were in short supply from about 1929 to 1939. Foods and supplies were rationed and people had to become thrifty and creative. My grandparents were born in the later part of that crisis. Having many people in your family makes you more thrifty. 

During this pandemic we have seen shortages in goods also so some of the old ration food have made a comeback. I have made a modified egg drop soup you learn to make what you can with what you can get. I recall being gifted zucchini. I made many wonderful things with very little. When my family was small I made a lot of vegetarian foods. We made dried bean dishes and fresh veggie dishes. We had to make a large block of cheese last all month, that is all we had money for. I would make stir fry with lots of fresh veggies. Toad in the hole was one that was enjoyed. That was bread, buttered on both sides with a hole cut in it. You would fry an egg in the hole of the bread. I remember using the cut piece as a crunchy dipping piece. As a kid my grandma would make me a poached egg and soldier sticks. That was toast cut in strips and you could dip it in the egg. My mom made fried egg sandwiches with ketchup. I loved that. I made something like this too for my family. I called them Mumwitches. They were made with a bagel and fried egg broken, then I would put the cheese on the egg in a hot pan and melt it. Sometimes I would put one slice of meat on  them. I also made muffins, with fruits, carrots or other ingredients. My partner jokes that I can make a gourmet meal with 3 items. I  roll my eyes at him and tell him that it is crazy I need spices!

Vegan au gratin potatoes made by me.

My childhood had many foods, I was blessed with many good cooks. My grandma used to put me on the counter to watch her cook. Very talented woman, she cooked for 9 people every day. When I lived there we only had 3 at home. 

We had many soups and yummy homemade bread, fresh grown foods from our garden in growing times and the winter we enjoyed canned foods. 

Food seemed to be something very important in our lives. We made candies and baked goods. We had frozen fruits washed, cut and packed into zip bags.

When my family lived at home we cooked many homemade soups, we liked international foods. When we were chatting about the food they remember and enjoyed, they liked my squash and the carrot ginger soup

Lentils made by me for our family

I remember going to my bigger family meals. There were so many of us. Grandma and grandpa had 7 kids. I think all of them had partners and 1 to 3 offspring. We worked together. In the summer we had many barbecues. My grandpa was known for his Rotisserie chickens. Grandpa had metal welded water dip trays for the bottom of the barbeque, it made things tender, keeping in the flavors and moisture and keeping them going slowly without burning. Family would bring side dishes to share. Special meals were made for the vegetarians in the family.

Vegan stir fry

Food memories seem to fill that emotional place for many. In countries all over the world food family and rituals are what gets us through the hard times. Sometimes foods don’t bring fond memories. What foods bring back memories in your life. Have you made foods that have comfort to your families? Have a positive week filled with food and goodness!