I have been enjoying the comments from yesterday's pantry post. Isn't it fun to see what other people find essential? Stephanie even commented! I do remember how she made all kinds of unusual (to me) meals when she was first married.
Partly inspired by a wedding gift of unusual spices (from our friend who recently moved to Europe) and a natural curiosity about different grains and foods. Steph is one of the best cooks I know but David's food sensitives now hinder her creativity at mealtime.
I must admit to having an unusual need for storing all kinds of canned tomatoes, too. Since all of the money I usually use for stocking up (when hubby works a few weeks each semester at the bookstore) went to cover not one... not two... but three car repairs last month... I'm down to just a couple cans of my favorite brand of tomatoes I use for soup. Do I detect a nervous twitch? :)
I used to stock those boxes of tofu that can be stored without refrigeration. They make a great pudding and pie filling by adding a package of melted and cooled chocolate chips (half semi-sweet and half milk chocolate works best for me) to two packages of the tofu in a mixer or blender and then chilling until firm. One of those recipes I used to make all the time but rarely do now. They also work great for smoothies if one is not sensitive to soy products (I use a little yogurt now).
If you haven't added your own unique or regional items you must have in the pantry, you can go to yesterday's post by clicking... here.
Note: I forgot, Nutella is a spread of a cocoa and hazelnut base which I find on the shelf next to peanut butter. Some stores may have it in the section where they have foreign foods on the shelf. I think (?) it was originally Italian?