Three consequences of improper storage of bulk products
Probably every hostess has at least once faced this nuisance: you pour cereals into a saucepan, and along with the grains, an unplanned “protein” also gets there … Where do small kitchen insects come from in a bag with future porridge is it a mystery? But they are the most common problem that happens with cereals.
The second problem is mold. We encounter it much less often, but this enemy should be even more accurately kept away from the kitchen since it is more dangerous than insects. As a rule, mold starts up from excess moisture, but the proximity to a damp room is not always the reason for this. Sometimes a drop of water falling into the rump is enough.
The third problem is the bad smell. It often occurs in cereals that have been stored for too long, in violation of all expiration dates. Or if you leave bulk products in the light.
And three simple tips so that nothing goes wrong
First tip: the right container
The easiest way is to leave the cereals in the boxes or bags in which they were purchased. But if you want to keep your supplies as safe as possible, start containers or cans that will delight the eye and serve as good protection for food.
Tip two: the right place
Cereals, legumes, spices, salt and sugar, tea, and coffee should be kept away from dust, sunlight, and dampness. The more airtight they are packaged, the more likely they are to retain their flavor and aroma. The best place is a kitchen cabinet or a dry, dark storage room.
Tip three: precautions
We have collected all the recommendations that will allow you to avoid trouble.
- Whenever possible, buy food in a container that allows you to see its contents. So you can immediately see if the cereals, spices, and everything else are in good condition. Give up food if you see that there is a lot of litter, incomprehensible dust, small grain particles in the package. This could be a sign of insects, or simply substandard.
- Transfer food from packaging to containers and jars immediately. Even if some cereal is infected with bugs, neighboring products will not be affected, since they will be protected by a double barrier.
- If you have already found insects in the closet and eliminated the source of the trouble, there is always a risk that other cereals could also be damaged. Do not trust visual inspection alone – just place adjacent containers or bags in the freezer for a couple of hours. Or make an express roasting of cereals in a frying pan.
- Never leave the container or jar open after you have measured the correct amount of food. Close immediately, unless you accidentally add anything extra, such as water or food particles, to the container. Also, never scoop up bulk food with a damp spoon or wet hand.
- Empty the container regularly to the end without leaving any cereals from the previous batch on the bottom. Observe the storage periods.
- If you want to keep insects out of your cereals, put a small linen bag of salt, citrus peels, dried chili peppers, a peeled garlic clove, or a bay leaf in the container.
- Clean up your kitchen shelves on a regular basis, ruthlessly throwing out delays and products whose quality is already in doubt.
Choosing the container
Plastic, glass, ceramic, or wood? When choosing a container, you need to take into account the characteristics of each material.
A glass jar is the standard of beauty and safety for any bulk product, be it cornflakes, pasta, flour, salt, cereals, spices, or coffee. Glass is a very environmentally friendly material that never emits anything, allowing you to preserve the natural taste and aroma of products. It also inhibits the growth of bacteria and mold. And the contents are also clearly visible through the transparent walls. It has disadvantages – it is heavy and fragile. These jars are not very suitable for people with weak hands.
Hint: if the price of glass containers seems too high for you, you can always make them yourself. For spices, jars of baby food are suitable, for cereals – juice bottles are peeled from labels. The main thing is to properly wash them (and lids) before use.
Earthenware, earthenware, or porcelain containers are in many ways similar to glass containers, but they have their own characteristics. Coated with glaze on the inside, it is also useful and good for food but opens up a wider range of different designs to choose from. You can decorate your shelves the Scandinavian way – white jars with wooden lids. You can give preference to bright summer flowers, khokhloma, or cats. The main thing to remember is that ceramics also have a decent weight, and you also have to memorize the contents of the jars by their pattern – after all, through the walls of such dishes it is impossible to see what is in it.
Hint: Choose ceramic containers with a tight-fitting lid that has a silicone gasket or even an extra metal clip.
The advantages of such a container are lightness and low price. If you follow the usual precautions for bulk solids, a plastic container can be a very good storage place. But do not put too fragrant spices in it – their smell can be permanently absorbed into the walls of the dishes. As with glass jars, clear plastic containers should be kept out of direct sunlight.
Stainless steel containers are not so popular, but they look unusually stylish and are often liked by men. Such containers also have a fairly significant weight, but at the same time, they are distinguished by their strength and durability. Suitable for all bulk products, easy to clean, mold and bacteria resistant. This cookware can serve for many years, adding a special charm to the kitchen.
This is a very, very beautiful material, but it is rather difficult to wash, and it also easily absorbs odors and moisture. Therefore, wooden containers are only suitable for a limited range of foods such as salt, sugar, and tea.