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What’s in my cupboard?


Everyone talks about the movement away from packet foods, yet a lot of people are scared when they look at recipes that have 10 ingredients.


One thing you’ll find if you come to my house is a well stocked pantry, fridge and freezer. But is it stocked with packet mixes? Pre packaged foods? No. It’s stocked with staples. All the things I’ll need to keep us going without dashing backwards and forwards to the shop for every meal I decide to make. I rarely need ingredients. And when I shop I restock or I might buy a few things I might need for a certain recipe that I don’t make too often.


What you will find in my pantry:


  • A large range of herbs and spices. From Coriander Seed to Cinnamon with some Star Anise in between (I will post later about my Dried Herbs & Spices collection).
  • Tomato Paste
  • Tinned Tomatoes (these can be used for casseroles, pastas sauces, soups, salsas etc)
  • Passata (for bolognaise or to use as a pizza sauce if you can’t be bothered blitzing some tinned tomatoes)
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk (for baking)
  • Tuna (we have small tins and large tins, I always buy it in springwater, and it is the meat on hand when you have nothing defrosted!)
  • Rice, we have 4 kinds at the moment – Basmati, Aborio, Jasmine and a regular Medium Grain for Turkish Pilav.
  • Flour – Self Raising, Plain, Strong White (for Pizza & Bread), Pasta & Noodle Flour, Cake Flour, Corn Flour. Now you don’t need to have all these flours, you can get away with Self Raising and Plain, but always keep check of stock.
  • Dried Noodles/Pasta – Spirals, Spaghetti, Fettucini, Penne, Gnocchi and sometimes soba noodles or some sort of asian noodle for stir fries and soups.
  • Polenta
  • Oats
  • Yeast – We have the dry active yeast sachets as I find these last longer than the canisters that need to be refrigerated.
  • Oils – Extra Virgin Olive OIl, Vegetable Oil (for frying), Olive Oil Spray, Canola Oil Spray, Sesame Oil, Peanut Oil (for stir fry), A good Olive Oil for Salads, Truffle Oil (it doesn’t have to be expensive and it lasts a long time! Great for eggs, risotto and mash not to mention salad dressings!)
  • Vinegars – white vinegar (great for cleaning and marinades), White Wine Vinegar, Red Wine Vinegar, Balsamic Vinegar
  • Soy Sauce
  • Kecap Manis (ABC Sauce it’s affectionately known as or Sweet Soy) – It’s a sweet thick soy.
  • Fish Sauce
  • Sweet Chili Sauce
  • Dry Sherry (or Shaoxing wine) for asian cooking
  • A Good Dry Vermouth (To quote Julia Child a good Dry Vermouth is better than cooking with a bad white wine) you will always have consistantly good results and it lasts forever.
  • Chocolate – I actually have 2 baking boxes, one for bits and bobs like colourings, gels, patty cases, decorations etc and one for Chocolate. I will have chocolate buds in milk, white and dark as well as the blocks that I keep especially for cooking. They aren’t necessarily cooking chocolate (YUCK!) but it’s not allowed to be “eaten” unless I am baking with it.
  • Cocoa an absolute must.
  • Sugars – I have white sugar, castor sugar, pure icing sugar (please stay clear of that “mix” stuff!), dark brown sugar, light brown sugar.
  • Golden Syrup
  • Honey
  • Salt – I know salt is salt right? No. Wrong. I have maldon and regular table salt as well as grinder salt.
  • Pepper – Same again, I have whole peppercorns, white pepper (for asian cooking), ground pepper.
  • Bicarb
  • Baking Powder
  • Custard Powder
  • Vegetarian/MSG/Preservative Free/Gluten Free Stock Powders – Yes we all should make our own stock and I do. But sometimes you need powdered stock. I have Chicken, Vegetable and Beef on hand at all times.
  • Dried Mushrooms like Porcini or Shitake (Great for when you’re at the end of your shopping week and you need some extra flavour in that sauce or risotto)
  • Tinned Fruit – Apples, Apricots, Peaches, Pears, Pineapple sometimes even Blueberries.


Next I’ll let you know what’s in my fridge…


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3 Responses to “What’s in my cupboard?”

  1. Fiona says:

    Awesome I need to start getting organised to stop using jars etc!

  2. Astrid says:

    Great list. Don’t have everything on there, but most of it. I do have a couple of longlife products as emergency back up. Milk and cream. If need be the cream works well in whipping up a quick pasta sauce.

  3. Mrs Neurotic says:

    Hi Fiona, How’s the no jar thing going. Send me some of those jar/packet mix meal bases and I’ll do recipes for you!

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