For years, I remember going to the grocery store, dropping $60 (sorry, Mom), then getting home and realizing I needed to go pick up dinner. I had staples, things I was "suppose" to buy, but not a darn thing in the house to eat.
Well, finally, finally!, I feel like I'm getting a hang of "our" routine. I have the staples that apply to us (ok, and things like pumpkin pie spice, which never gets used). I love being able to make cornbread from what we have on hand, or bread for that matter. Salad dressings. Cobbler. Crisps. Cookies. Oatmeal cookies!
Granted, some of this new-found pride comes from the fact that B & I are moving (yes, again) in a few months and have a lot of here-and-there travel in between, so we're officially eating the pantry. We haven't gotten down to multi-night spaghetti yet (and, actually blue box mac 'n cheese is more likely in our multi-night future), but we have started trying to work our way through condiments, frozen meats, and pantry staples.
At the very least, I'd love to have all my flour, sugar, etc fit into the cannisters before we move. Last time, all our spices went into a tub, which went into a POD, which spent a sleepy summer in a climate-controlled storage facility, though not before trucking across town or, on the back end, several states, in 90-degree heat (sorry, spices). This time we'll be more direct, but hopefully less bountiful.
My Mom always advised that I learn to cook things while I had time, which I assume means before I have someone around my ankles asking about paint, cookies, or why there's finger paint on the cookies. So far, we've amassed a decent collection, but I'm more excited that I'm (slowly) mastering ingredients themselves. I know how to use curry (kind of-- trial, by fire, and error on that one), and how to make taco seasoning (a tried-and-true staple in our home). I can make our version of guac, pasta sauce, alfredo sauce, and, well, I'm sure other things.
Finally! After years of loving cooking, I feel like I'm generally understanding it. I am the master of my spice rack, at least for today.
I think I smell something burning....
As a note, this post was inspired by my first attempt at pinto beans. Yes, I bought dry beans and I realize this is no huge success, but I can't wait for B to try them. They're amazing. Granted, they simmer for two hours (winter food, anyone?), but I'm not sure we'll go back to canned. Feel free to throw that back at me later when we run into each other in the El Paso section of the grocery store.