We all know I don’t cook. Not cooking is not as easy as you might think. I have had to perfect, over many years, certain skills to maintain the level of non-cooking expertise I have achieved. Number one on the list is avoidance of potentially dangerous cooking-related environments. Like the kitchen. Avoidance is an under-rated skill, in my opinion. You can’t take avoidance for granted, because certain feelings can try to override avoidance. Like hunger. Hunger can lure you into the kitchen, because, obviously, that’s where the food is. I try to stash emergency rations in other places. I find this helps to maintain avoidance.
The next important place to avoid is the pantry. While I try to maintain my avoidance techniques here, it is somewhat challenging, due to the possible hunger issue again. So I have come up with a rather unique solution: keep a fully stocked pantry by never examining the expiration dates of anything in it. I’m currently taking a run at the Guinness Book of Records on the oldest item in a pantry. I believe I have a shot at it. My husband found a can of Campbell’s Tomato soup that had an expiration date of 1987. Last year. He felt it would qualify. Today, I was driven by hunger to go into the pantry. There were a number of promising items, one of which was a can of herring in cream sauce. I turned it over. Expired in 2004. Not even close to my Tomato soup contender.
Just to point out how advanced my avoidance skills are, we bought this house in 2006. That means I had to have packed these items from my old pantry and brought them with me. And paid movers to do that.
My husband says he saw expiration dates in Roman numerals when he first moved in. And a milk carton that said “Lindberg made it”. But he exaggerates. I have yet to find anything pre 1987. But who knows? For those of you new to the joys of not cooking, these skills take years to cultivate. But with discipline and determination, you too can achieve the undying gratitude of restaurants and take-out businesses everywhere. Just hang in there.