The herbs and spices , present in our kitchens and pantries for centuries, provide an inexhaustible range of aromas, flavors and nuances to all our dishes.
But these aromas are lost from the moment they are collected, ground or roasted. Therefore, in 1001especias we take special care when processing only that minimum quantity that allows us to meet the daily needs of our customers, so that instead of processing large quantities and then having them stored waiting for the moment of their sale, we have chosen to treat much smaller quantities, but continuously, so that virtually none of our spices are in our stores more than three to four weeks (and usually much less).
This care contrasts with the spices that can be found on large surfaces, where large volumes are handled and then stored for many months until they reach the consumer. With our spices it is NOT necessary to bring the nose closer to see if they smell, since when opening the containers the aroma already betrays its freshness and quality.
In our homes
Ok, we have made the spices reach your homes in optimal conditions, now it is in your hands that they remain in perfect condition for as much of the time as possible, and for that Here are some tips that we hope will help you.
How important is proper conservation?
Yes, and much. If you want, you can do the following test: take some paprika, put it in a glass jar (which is closed, to represent a real use) and leave it in the kitchen, in sight. The rest, keep it tightly closed in a dark, cool and dry place.
After just a couple of weeks, compare both peppers, and you can start to notice subtle differences - don't expect a difference too obvious- . The paprika exposed to light will have a lower aroma and the color slightly more muted. It is important that you do this with a fresh paprika, since the one that you can buy in the large surfaces, apart from being of doubtful quality, has already suffered a discoloration and loss of aroma due to the storage process and the time in exposure in the store.
That said, it is also important to note that obviously some spices are more delicate than others . A piece of licorice is more tolerant of moisture and light than saffron. And those that are ground are also much more delicate in their handling than those presented in grain.
Exhibitors and / or showcases
Very often we turn to exhibitors where, arranged in different ways, the boats with all our spices look colorful.
If we opt for this system, which is true that it is very practical and above all very colorful, we must be very careful about where we put said display, since it is usually placed on the countertops and work areas, very handy and practical, but at the same time excessively exposed to light, one of the great enemies of spices, and even sometimes the heat generated when cooking.
Therefore, we recommend that if you opt for this solution do two things:
- Store the display in a closet, which will protect it from light.
- Put in these boats a small amount of each spice, which does not last more than one or two weeks, and go replenishing when you need it (while, the rest you can have it tightly closed inside a tin or cardboard box, at the bottom of the alhacena or pantry).
We are aware that these tips are not aesthetically appealing, since we usually like to have spice cans full to the top and show off their colors, but the spices will thank you.
An alternative to glass may be to opt for ceramic boats, which do not let sunlight pass.
Cut out a piece of cardboard that is as tall as the boat, and as long as the perimeter of the boat. We roll it up a little to put it inside the empty boat, so that when released it will be uncovered covering the walls and preventing the entry of light.
Ok, yes, you have stored it in a closet, but better if it is not in the one above the kitchen extractor, or next to the oven, or next to the fridge or refrigerator (which has an engine, and like any engine, generates heat. Try only to put your hand on the fridge or in the back, you will see how it gives off heat).
Cool and dry place ... not cold. The fridge is usually not recommended unless we talk about fresh herbs, but that's another story. Besides that tampco is usually, in general, an environment too dry.
Better in grain
Whenever possible, and unless you are going to use large quantities, buy the "whole" spices. That is, in leaves, grain or seeds and grinds at the time of going to use them, since they will maintain their aroma for a longer time.
Buy excessive quantities
Although we would like you to buy us spices for kilos, doing this at the domestic level would, as a general rule, be a mistake. We must always buy reasonable quantities, which allow us to consume them in a reduced time, and replenish as we need it.
In case you want to buy large quantities, for better prices, we recommend that you join several friends and share what you buy.
Buy the same amount of all spices
Another common mistake, which is similar to the previous one, is the habit of buying the same amounts of all spices when it is normal for us to use more than others. For example, if we like to add some thyme leaves in all our stews, but we only use rosemary for the lamb, it would be better to buy more thyme than rosemary.
We hope that these brief tips, which we will expand over time and with your contributions , help you keep your spices in optimal conditions until the time of use.