They say March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. After this never-ending winter filled with bitter cold and more than its fair share of snowstorms, let's hope that this is indeed the case!
Spring is a time of renewal and regrowth, and is often associated with the impetus for cleaning, purging and organizing. What better place to kick off your spring cleaning than in the kitchen?
Wondering how to get started? Here are a few tips and tricks to make spring cleaning a breeze.
Keep it Fresh - Make sure your jarred spices still have their potency. A good rule of thumb is 1 - 2 years. However, the best way is simply to use your sense of smell. Open the jar and give it a good sniff. If the spice doesn't smell as it should, it is probably best to replace it. Check your cooking oils for 'best if used before' dates. Once opened, most oils will last for about a year, but the sniff test works well here, too. Oils can go rancid, so it's important to check before using in a recipe.
Stock Up - There are pantry items that you should always have at the ready. These staples will make it easy to pull together a meal in a pinch, or pull something together for those unexpected guests. Make sure you have all the essentials stocked and ready to go, from bread crumbs to cornstarch.
Purge - Just like your wardrobe, if you haven't work or used it in over a year, throw it out or give it away. This way, you have more room to organize the cooking tools you use on a regular basis.
Get Organized - Clean out your cabinets. Try to store your pots, pans and lids together. Stack baking sheets and pans in size order and place items that you use most often in the most readily accessible spots. If you have enough counter space, don't be afraid to keep your small appliances out. With all of the fun and vibrant colors offered, you can really make them part of your kitchen's décor and, more importantly, have them set up and ready to go when you need them.
Mix it Up - No longer in love with your china or everyday dishes? Instead of replacing the entire set, pick up some fun salad or dessert plates that will work with your pattern and use them with your existing set.
Create a Baking Station - Pick one area of your kitchen to store your mixer, rolling pin, marble slab, baking sheets, measuring spoons and cups. Place flour, sugar and other 'baking' ingredients in decorative canisters making it easier to get going with your favorite recipes.
With Kitchen Moxie, dinner party success is simple and stress-free with over 50 unique menu ideas, delicious recipes and step-by-step instructions for pulling it all together on the big night. Get inspired at www.kitchenmoxie.net.
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