Spring cleaning isn’t just for your furniture and floors. When was the last time you cleaned your kitchen pantry? If you’re frugal, you probably tend to hang on to cooking ingredients and spices a little too long, especially if it’s something you don’t use regularly.
The experts at Food and Wine magazine say expired products, even if they don’t smell bad, can ruin a recipe.
Check the box for the expiration date on your baking soda and baking powder. If you keep it a bit longer, a simple test will tell you if they will still work for baking. Mix one cup of hot water with 2 teaspoons of baking powder or soda. If there an immediate fizzing and the powder dissipates, you know it still works. if there is no bubbling, it is time to replace it.
Store your cooking oil in a cool, dark area. Oils that have gone bad will have a metallic, soapy or bitter smell. Even flour, especially whole wheat flour, can go bad. Food experts suggest keeping it in your freezer. They say spices only last about three months if they’re ground, and six months if they’re whole.
That nasty kitchen sponge should go as soon as you smell anything on it that is unpleasant. You can microwave them or run them through your dishwasher to sanitize them, but you should do that before they start to smell.