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A well-stocked pantry offers bıg benefits


Published: 03/05/2012


Ever find yourself preparing a dish and realize that you don’t have all the ingredients you need? It’s happened
to us all at some time or other and it’s frustrating and costly having to make a dash to the store.


If you keep a well-stocked pantry of kitchen staples, you’ll save money and time. Plus, with basic ingredients on hand,
you can easily try a new recipe on the spur of the moment.


What you find in a well-stocked pantry will vary, depending on things such as cultural preferences, food sensitivities and
tastes. A vegetarian may not have chicken or beef stock as a kitchen staple and someone with a nut allergy is not likely to have peanut butter on the shelf. But, making allowances for personal preferences, there are some things that are
good to have on hand.


The items below can sit on the shelf, sometimes for months. However, they have expiry dates so it’s a good idea to
replace them as necessary.


Canned goods

Whole tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste; fish – tuna, salmon, mackerel, sardines; vegetable, chicken and beef stock;
beans and lentils.


Baking and dry goods

All-purpose flour, baking powder and baking soda, cornstarch, cream of tartar, brown and white sugar, vanilla extract,
cocoa powder, powdered milk, rolled oats, raisins, pasta, rice, bread crumbs.

Spices and seasonings

Salt and pepper, dried bay leaves, thyme, oregano, basil, dill, ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves.



Mustard – both dry and prepared; ketchup; mayonnaise; oil – canola and olive; vinegar – white, red wine, cider; maple
syrup; Worcestershire sauce; honey.


Refrigerator cold ingredients


Milk, eggs, butter or margarine, cheese, plain yogurt.



Peas, corn, mixed vegetables, spinach, bread, juice concentrates, berries or fruit.


From the lists above, let’s prepare a family meal. The soup recipe calls for fresh carrots, celery, onions, garlic
and lean ground beef. You’ll need fresh apples for the dessert recipe. Everything else is from the pantry list.


Minestrone Soup

Make this hearty soup into a meal by adding some crusty bread and a salad.



1/2 lb. lean ground beef, browned and

1 cup small pasta

28 oz. can of diced tomatoes

4 cups beef stock

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1/2 cup diced carrots

1/2 cup diced celery

1/2 cup diced onions

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 tsp. dried basil

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

1 bay leaf

19 oz. can white kidney beans, drained and

Salt and pepper to taste



In a large saucepan, heat the oil, add onions, garlic, carrots and celery, and cook until softened. Stir in tomatoes
with their juice, bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in stock, beans, beef, pasta and seasonings, cover and simmer for another 30 minutes until pasta is cooked. Serves 4-6.


Old-fashioned Apple Crisp

Take advantage of Ontario apples that are still available at this time of the year.



 6 cups of peeled sliced apples – Empires, McIntosh or Idared are good.

 3/4 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup softened butter

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg



Pre-heat oven to 375°F. Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Toss apple slices with granulated sugar and cinnamon and
arrange in baking dish. In a small bowl, combine oats, flour, nutmeg and butter. Using a fork or pastry blender, mix the topping until coarse crumbs form. Sprinkle the topping over the apples and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the apples are soft and the topping is browned. Serve warm. Makes 6  servings.   



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