In a frenzy of spring cleaning, the Frugal Diva attacked her spice rack to see how long some of these little bottles had been living in the pantry. As it turns out, the rosemary had been hanging out there since the nineties. I made a list, checked it twice, and promptly went into sticker shock at the market. It was cheaper to follow the spice trail to India then to restock.
Since I love to cook there needed to be a solution that cost less and still provided me with high quality spices. Hailing from the Midwest, Penzey’s was an alternative however their prices were still pretty high. Luckily I ventured into the store near me and found a loophole in the spice price. Buying spices in bottles, still high. Buying spices in bags and transferring them to your own little bottles, quite a bit lower. Let’s do the math. A bottle containing .8 ounces of cracked rosemary leaves goes for $3.55. A resealable bag containing one full ounce goes for $1.89. What are you going to do with an abundance of any spice or herb? The other great tip is that you can store the sealed bag in the freezer for at least six months.
If Penzeys is not around the corner, then order from the website. Now they do charge for shipping however if you split orders with friends, you can save even further. Have a party of spice or herb inspired recipes with friends and turn each shipment into an event.
Find ethnic markets in your area and check out what they have to offer in the spice, herb, and oil departments.