I took inventory.
Maybe it’s the restaurateur in me that can’t just approximate how full the pantry is. I needed to know exactly what’s in there and how long it’s going to take to use it up. So I made a spreadsheet and got to work.
I sorted out the pasta bin. Okay, a lot more gluten-free pasta lurking around than I thought we’d have, considering no one in our house is gluten-free. But we can use this stuff.
Now the rice bin. Hmm, that’s a lot of rice. Farro? I didn’t know I had farro. And why do I have 2 types of sweet brown rice? Interesting. I can use all of this. Even the matzo ball mix.
The snacks shelf. So I went overboard with energy snacks for running. 1 bag full of radioactive running gummy snacks. And there’s STILL Swiss chocolate in here from our honeymoon. We can take care of that. Almost out of crackers, though. A common occurrence in our house.
Now for the baking shelves.
That’s right, shelves with an “s” at the end.
Here’s what I think happened. Last year, I discovered the health food store in Waco. After shopping solely at HEB (there’s kind of a grocery store monopoly going on here in Central Texas), I went a little nuts when I found a store that sold multiple types of seaweed and had a whole refrigerated section for miso and tempeh. It was heaven!
The health food store also carries an impressive selection of Bob’s Red Mill products, I discovered. Bob’s Red Mill. So safe. All in nice little bags, stacked up in rows like dominoes. Oats, durum wheat, flaxseed, pastry flour, biscuit mix, graham flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, corn flour, corn flour, corn flour, whole wheat pastry flour, grits…ahh!!
Every time I walked through the Bob’s Red Mill section at the health food store, I saw something I’d never seen before – oooh! special oats! – and threw it into my cart out of fear I’d never find it in a store again. Then I’d get home and throw it into the baking bin, where it would slowly sink beneath the top layer of all-purpose and whole wheat flours, until…
…wait for it …
THERE WERE 52 TYPES OF FLOUR.
I’m not kidding. I almost didn’t want to post this because it makes me feel like an asshole. I mean, people are going hungry, and I’m hoarding boutique baking ingredients?
And guess what else? SEVENTEEN of them are unopened.
I’ll go hide behind something now. Actually I’ll go start baking. I’m thinking graham crackers, hushpuppies, tons of pancakes, and probably some rye bread. Who knew this pantry cleanup would send my down a DIY path.
Does anyone else get sucked in by the Bob’s Red Mill packages? Anyone else hiding a collection? In the moment, how do you tell yourself to drop the pumpkin bread mix and back away slowly?
The Waco Vegan is no longer updated. You can find me over at RandleBrowning.com instead.