How to crate a pantry with space for everything
A pantry is a cook's prop closet. With planning, the meal maker can always have something special tucked away to dazzle the audience, whether that's a large gathering or just a few sleepy-eyed youngsters. Cereals, spices, fine oils, sauces and sweet surprises can become part of the repertoire.
There are no rules today for the size or shape of that stash of food staples, snacks, linens and party platters. A pantry can be a row of baskets, a freestanding cabinet, built-in custom shelves or even a separate room.
The idea is to have a plan for keeping up with everything. A well-stocked pantry can make the work of the most humble cook more sparkly. Suddenly, the cook can have dried fruits, chilies, extracts and imported chocolates within easy reach. Holidays, potlucks and treats for movie night in your jammies might never be the same.
• Keep your work area small. Don't be afraid to improvise. Vertical space and shelves are less expensive than drawers and baskets.
• If you've got a large space, you've likely got space for wine storage, chafing dishes, platters, glasses and small appliances. Stick to the basics in a small space. Dry goods and canned foods are among those.
• Keep your work area concise, so you won't have far to walk from prep area to pantry. The stove, sink and food storage areas should be within a tight triangle.
• Store heavy items on lower shelves. Use top shelves for paper products, linens and things less likely to harm you.
•Most shelves should be no deeper than 10 inches. Smaller items get lost or forgotten when stored on deep shelves.
• Include a basket or drawer for healthy snacks if you have children in the home. They'll know the foods stored there have your OK.
• Store cookie sheets and platters vertically. You'll waste time getting to them if they're stacked.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Steelers know fast start could be key to upcoming season
- Steelers receiver Heyward-Bey looks to make most of chance
- Rossi: Cole perfect pitcher to start pivotal series for Pirates
- Steelers formalize practice squad
- Scientists dismiss dire outlook for Western Pennsylvania winter weather
- Shadyside’s A Fair in the Park arts-and-crafts fest marks ‘benchmark year’
- Former Clairton, Pitt cornerback Coles enrolls at Duquesne
- Pirates notebook: Bucs unlikely to make trade before deadline
- On the border of Westmoreland, Fayette, Jacobs Creek section is sacred spot
- Deer Lakes golf team winning with a workmanlike approach
- Western Pennsylvania workers’ names echo different career paths