You might be surprised to know that spices were once as important as currencies. Nowadays they are not as scarce as they were in those days, it is possible to consume and still have some to spare for another day. This means that we should have proper storage skills or else they will not be potent for use. Spices need some protection so that they can retain their potent and actually be of help when we consume them. By now, you may have known that spices rarely go bad or spoil but they can easily loose their potency especially when they are not stored in the right manner. It is recommended that spices be consumed within a particular period; we should avoid keeping them for long as this also leads to reduction of potency. You do not want to consume spices only to find out later that they are not giving you the kind of results that you are looking for, this can be avoided through making sure that they are always stored safely.
Whole spices can stay fresh for a period of up to four years; ground spices on the other hand can last up to two years before loosing their potency. It is not recommended to keep dried herbs for more than one year since their delicate flavor is known to wane quickly. Although it is best to keep your spices in a dry cabinet, there is no harm if you keep them in large containers in the freezer. Whole spices can be kept here and still retain their color and flavor four years down the line while the ground spices will only last for six months. It is not recommended to keep small amounts of spices in the freezer as they may trap in humidity especially when opened, making them loose their potency.
Although spices do not spoil easily if they are stored in the right conditions, it is important to know that they have an expiry date which can be as long as four to five years depending on the type of spices you are talking about. It is always advisable to check the expiry date when storing so that when it come to use them you can start with those that has a recent expiry date. This will make sure that you do not consume something which has already expired. When store properly, spices can last long enough to give us the kind of flavor that we have always wanted in our food. If you happen to buy more than you need within a short time apply the best storage method and you will not regret.
Do you have a special place or container that you hold your spices in? Share it with us; we'd love to know!