Wednesday, September 09, 2009


We’ve just completed another Pantry-Cleaning Exercise, the Missus and I.

Thanks in part to my Pack-Rat Tendencies, we tend to accumulate all manner of food in the pantry. I have a way of buying things that look interesting without having any definite plans to use them, with the inevitable result that they sit around until we have to toss ’em out.

Being that it is a major Pain in the Ass, the task of pantry-cleanage gets done at Chez Elisson when one of two conditions is met: (1) There’s so much crap in the pantry, we can’t find anything we’re looking for, or (2) We’re hit with an infestation of Granary Weevils.

This time, it was Condition Number Two.

It’s not like it’s the first time we’ve had to deal with those buggy little fuckers. They seem to show up once every several years, even though we’re pretty good about keeping certain dry goods sealed up in plastic. Problem is, weevils will get in by laying eggs inside whole grain kernels, and there is no external evidence that a piece of grain contains a weevil larva... until the little fellow eats his way out.

Weevils are actually pretty harmless. They don’t bite, they don’t sting, and they don’t carry disease. But the idea of having them crawling around on my food, eating their fill and leaving little deposits of weevil-shit and tiny puddles of weevil-piss, just skeeves me out. Feh.

The only solution is to check every item in the pantry and throw out anything that even harbors a suspicion of Weevil-Content. It’s a great opportunity (at least in out house) to also toss out all of the outdated and expired food... all that Useless Crap I bought on sale at William-Sonoma because it looked exotic.

There’s usually one item that turns out to be the source of the weevils... or at least something that holds a powerful attraction for them. I’m pretty sure we figured out what it was: a couple of old packages of Abuelita Mexican chocolate.

Old, sure. Several years, at the least. I love Abuelita (“Little Grandma”), which comes in the form of thick discs of solid chocolate, jacked up with coarse sugar and with a noticeable undertone of cinnamon. When you want a cup of hot chocolate, you snap one of the discs in half, drop it into a cup of hot milk, and stir until it dissolves. Tasty good.

Only trouble is, I don’t drink a lot of hot chocolate these days owing to my aversion to feeding my ever-growing Fat-Ass. And so the Abuelita sits... and sits... and sits...

...and eventually the weevils find it and go apeshit with delight. “Hey, Charlie, c’mere and check this stuff out - it’s top-drawer!”

And thus it was the the Little Grandma (and plenty of other stuff) got deep-sixed. And the pantry is now nice and well-organized and clean and (as far as we can tell) weevil-free.

Time to make another Williams-Sonoma run. I need some more Useless, Exotic Crap.

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