Thursday 11 June 2015

Kondo-ing walk of shame

As it's not warm enough to sit outside 
with a nice glass of something chilled,
I have been Kondo-ing the pantry this evening.

It goes without saying that I had many packets and jars
 of years out of date pasta,
 mystery grains, pulses,
a huge bottle of Monin ginger syrup,
stale ground rice, semolina, 
flax seeds, millet, hemp,
 Smash dried potato,
mung beans, moong dal, popping corn,
aduki beans, black eyed beans,
Horlicks,  drinking chocolate, and fancy herb teas,

but what really shocked me was the seven,
different types of sugar, cluttering up the shelves.

Golden caster.
Soft light brown.
Rainbow crystals.

No wait,
That's eight.
different types of sugar, cluttering up the shelves.
The only one I haven't got is cubes.

Surely I don't need all those?
Well of course, granulated for
my brother's and builders' tea,
caster for light sponge cakes and meringues,
golden caster because Nigel Slater said so,
Muscovado for rich fruit cakes,
icing, for icing,
Demerara for putting on top of cakes
because Nigel Slater said so,
soft light brown for brownies,
and rainbow crystals for. . .
old times sake, because my parents used to put it out on the
coffee tray if we had visitors
and I wanted to amuse the children with it.

This isn't going well.
The only one that didn't spark joy was Muscovado
because it had gone rock hard.

You can tell I am a child of the fifties,
 born just as sugar came off rationing.

Must I stop eating cake?


  1. if they all spark joy then you must keep them, and the muscavado could probably be rescued x I probably have all those, but instead of rainbow sugar I know we have purple, blue, pink AND green sugar crystals......

    never ever mention stopping eating cake again, or I might cry............

  2. I did the same last week and found things going back to 2009 but only three types of sugar - Nigel convinced me of golden caster sugar too.

  3. I know that I shall never attempt this Kondo-ing, it would be heartbreaking to say goodbye to my old aduki beans...

  4. Check your horlicks. I bet that's gone hard too. I'd keep all the sugars & ditch the herb teas. The other week I used up quite a few out of date seeds. Chucked them in the bread maker, each time we made bread. I could try & compete with 2009 Cayenne.

    1. It has. Rock hard. Bread was my next idea for the flax, hemp, linseed etc.

  5. I'm with driftwood - if they spark joy you must KEEP them - that's the rules Lucille! I've still to get to the food cupboards.....

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  7. lol, well, i suppose if you use the sugars then they are worthy and must stay (although a rock hard muscovado begs to differ). never heard of rainbow crystals!
    you would be shocked to know that there is zero sugar in my house. i know right?

  8. Of course you must eat more cake, much more to use up your little sugar mountain. x

  9. They all sound essential to me. I've never come across rainbow sugar crystals before - they look too pretty to eat! My home is sadly sugar-free so if anyone knows a good cake recipe with no sugar, gluten or dairy, do tell :-/ !!!

  10. I don't suffer from sugar angst because it is a natural product and you can either buy Fair Trade cane sugar or low food miles beet sugar. Sugar does not go off so you can keep it indefinitely. If your muscovado has dried out you can rejuvenate it by placing in a bowl and covering with a damp tea towel. I don't bother with golden caster sugar but I do have a multiplicity of browns for various recipes. One note of caution - if your treacle is significantly past its sell by date dispose of the tin immediately.

    1. Yes - treacle can ferment. If it explodes in the cupboard it would be messy but if the lid hits you in the face it could be very painful.

  11. I find so many of my own doomed dry goods purchases are brought about because the items are presented by the retailer as Lifestyle, but, upon being unpacked at home, turn out to be merely Dry Goods. Keep all that sugar, whatever you do. Eight types isn't enough.

  12. -grin- It is always an eye-opening experience, when we really take a close look, at our 'pantry'! Are we pack-rats by nature? Is it in our genes, to "be prepared" for every possible happening? And these would be "happenings" in the kitchen. -grin-

    Well, you looked. You decided. Now you know that that shelf anyway, is as it should be.

    Now, how about looking at your spices???????????

    -ducking, running, and hiding-


    1. The spice cupboard is next and then there is the jams, pickles and condiments collection. But look! The sun has come out.

  13. I'm trying to clear out my home office but haven't yet read the book so not considering my "joy" at this point. Except that wastebaskets are filling and then emptying and then filling again and then emptying . . . which is its own kind of joy, I suppose. Some of my file folders had the office counterpart of your eight varieties of sugar, but without the sweetness, they got jettisoned!

  14. Lucille, when I read the words "the pantry" I think I might have taken on a faintly green tinge. Oh, to have a pantry! I have managed to suppress that longing, and continue on with discovering that there might be seven or eight different types of sugar. What surprised me was realizing I have heard of each of these sugars, and perhaps even encountered them in others' cooking or baking, although I've not ever purchsed many of them myself.

    I'm sure if I did have a pantry, I would have managed my own little group of sugars. In my tiny kitchen cabinet I have plain white granulated sugar, light brown sugar and powered sugar. All have earned their places of honor.

    The prior comments have added to the fun of this post. xo

  15. I'm laughing. Far too many packets of sugar here as well, I find it quite annoying that everything requires a different one. What exactly is the different between light soft brown and light Muscovado anyway and does it matter? Sigh. I also have jam sugar, mustn't forget the jam sugar. CJ xx

  16. lol!! I don't think we can even buy that many types of sugar in sophisticated Switzerland… ;o
    There is white sugar, regular, from the sugar factory here IN TOWN!! (Made from beets, is that something special? Local tractor trailers piled high with sugar beets block the roads around here every Oct-Dec when you're trying to get somewhere.) Or organic that has probably come from far-flung sugar cane. And there is one type of brown sugar on the shelves, either finely ground or in crystals. No idea how to categorise it but have been told by my granny that it's not "right" for English cakes.
    Hm, now I think about it, you can get rock sugar and since cupcakes are "in" they are selling coloured sugar… as often as not in the cheap biin because hardly anyone will use something so foreign ;o
    (gosh yes, jam sugar is a "must-have" for the domestic Swiss goddess…)
    Now I wish I could get my hands on my MIL's pantry for Kondoing - both a kitchen and cellar chock full of out-of-date stuff to make your hair stand on end, two freezers and two fridges. For an elderly lady living on her own and having her meals delivered… :o

  17. Sugar keeps very nicely for years, Lucille, so don't throw it out! I have cubes if you want them, with little icing flowers on each. Sugaring the sugar.... a gift from a friend in my baking days.

  18. I too subscribe to the Gospel according to Saint Nigel... Lots of sugar here as well (despite it being this year's saturated fat, i.e. source of all evil). Having given the stuff up recently (not permanently, I hasten to add) I've been giving sugar much thought. As in craving very specific things, mostly covered in dark chocolate like those raspberry Ruffle bars. I'm not even sure they still make those any more. I sincerely hope they do.
    Maybe try flavouring some sugar with vanilla or lavender?
    Just don't stop baking. That would be too awful.

  19. Oh...rainbow sugar. How nice. I must get some for the grandchildren. I'll store it behind the cinnamon sugar and next to the lump sugar I buy at the Persian market. This Kondo-ing thing is fun.

  20. No rainbow sugar here, but I've just made two jars of rosepetal sugar.