Friday, August 26, 2011

In the Pantry-Baking Essentials

Last week I started a series about keeping a well-stocked pantry.  Did that post get you thinking about your pantry space and how it can be organized?  One thing I know for sure is that one person's organization strategy does not work for everyone.  Keep that in mind as you read this series.  These pantry posts should provide inspiration rather than a road map for your basic pantry.  Your pantry must work for you to make your life easier and that means it must be customized to your needs.

Today I want to start to share with the items that are baking staples in my pantry.  By staples I mean these are my go to items.  We're not talking gourmet items here.  These are the products I don't want to be without.  When my pantry is stocked with my staples I find I am ready to cook a meal or bake a dessert without having to run to the store for ingredients. 

Today's focus is on the baking essentials in my pantry.  You can get my list of baking essentials by clicking on the link.  Take it along with you to the grocery store the next time you go.


Most of my baking staples hang out together on one shelf in my pantry.  It is a deep shelf, so I'm able to have a couple of rows on it.  I try to keep the items I use most frequently to the front of the shelf.

Let's see what's there, shall we?


The Flours
I keep multiple flours on hand because flour creates the foundation for most baked goods.  While it is convenient have the right flour for the recipe you can feel comfortable keeping all-purpose flour on hand for most of your baking needs.  The flours I keep on hand are unbleached all-purpose flour, unbleached bread flour, whole wheat flour and cake flour.



The Sweeteners
Most baked goods need a sweetener of some kind.  I keep traditional sweeteners on hand: granulated sugar, confectioners sugar, light brown sugar, turbinado sugar, molasses, honey and both light and dark corn syrup.



The Basics
There are a number of items that are the work horses of baking.  These are salt, kosher and table, baking soda, baking powder, vegetable shortening and corn starch.



The Flavorings
These items are add-ins, used as needed, but frequently enough in my kitchen that I include them as essentials: cocoa powder, powdered milk, sweetened condensed milk, dried cranberries and chocolate chips. I consider nuts an essential, but you won't find them on my pantry shelf.  I keep nuts in my freezer.




How does my list compare to your pantry baking essentials list?  Did I omit an item you consider to be a staple?

Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Did I mention before that I am so glad you are doing this series? Well, I am so glad you are doing this! I love your recipes, but I often find that I am lacking some ingredients that should be staples in my cabinets. It's good to have a list of the basics. Thanks for sharing your expetise with us novice cooks!

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