Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Spice Storage - More Stuff In Less Space

My Main Storage Area
    I like to cook. Yes, I know everyone who reads these articles knows that already, but I do! The more complex the dish, the more likely it is you will require a bevy of spices and herbs. Not that you NEED to have all that, but I like to have a variety. The problem is, as usual, space. My RV is small. Storage is always at a premium. So when I find something that increases the quantity of stuff without using up additional space I am very happy. Using existing wasted space is a "slam-dunk!" When you can't simply add more, become more efficient.

I used to have to spread my spice containers out in various storage drawers in my wardrobe closet turned pantry. Remembering where each one was and opening and closing all the drawers every time I cooked was getting to be a real hassle. While shopping in a liquidator-type place I came upon the "Swivel-Store." Kind of a bad name. Not very "catchy" at all.

I believe this was an "As seen on TV" product. There may have even been an infomercial ad campaign. Now it's relegated to liquidation and bargain shops.

The idea is simple. The shelves sit side by side, the narrow way. And when you need something from them, they slide out and rotate 90 degrees to give you access to the shelves. You can only have one shelf unit out at a time. It's a good idea. Of course the unit was too tall to fit in any of my cabinets, but i had a bit of unused space on the top of the smaller plastic drawer column in the pantry.

Build quality is OK. Not as strong as I'd like, and the slide/swivel mechanism is very tight to begin with. A touch of lubrication (I used some lithium grease) and moving the mechanism through its paces a few times loosened it up nicely. I would recommend adding some weight to the base, or using some double sided tape to secure the base to whatever surface you are putting it on. Once fully loaded, it may become quite heavy. I haven't DRIVEN with this contraption yet, but it appears that it will stay secure and retain all the spice containers nicely. Will it rattle? I'll let you know.

Once installed in my pantry I noticed I couldn't fully swivel the shelve 90 degrees. It hits the side of the closet opening and a bit of the light fixture that's mounted on the wall of the closet. Not really a big problem as I can still access everything there.

Probably should have checked BEFORE I taped it down... ah well, live and learn.

Now that I have some additional storage for spices, herbs and the like, I'll have to go out and buy some more. Hmmm.... What to get? I already have the staples; salt, pepper, garlic, parsley, oregano, basil, white pepper, cilantro, paprika, ginger and chili powder. Probably add some chopped onion, thyme, rosemary, sage, dill, chinese five-spice, coriander, cloves, bay leaves, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, wasabi powder, mustard seed, nutmeg and tarragon. Probably forgetting quite a few, but that should fill up my spice rack nicely! Make sure you buy containers that will fit in the rack. I found that some of my larger jars wouldn't.

Be Seeing You... Down The Road,

Rich "The Wanderman"

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