Expiration Dates Mean Nothing to this Woman

This morning I was returning my spices to the new kitchen (very exciting) and I noticed a bottle of “mace” from the A n P Tea Company. The very source of of the legendary celery salt which met its demise a year or two ago. Well, the expiration date on the mace is October 17, 1975. It had been priced at $.99 but it was purchased (reduced for quick sale) for $.50.

Now if you are wondering what one does with mace. About 1.8 to 1/4 teaspoon go in an old fashioned pound cake. i might be able to get 6 more cakes out of this bottle!

I love both of you,

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    • 1.  Megan

      My mother does the same thing. I can’t get her to throw out her old spices…. I swear…. Ugh!

      August 26, 2009 at 11:37 am

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    • 2.  P

      We moved my mother out of her house into an apartment. Her house was very old and had a huge walk in pantry. Cleaning that out and looking at the dates on cans, spices, etc. was scary! We had to take her Costco card at that point!

      August 26, 2009 at 12:26 pm

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    • 3.  Steffy

      Yeah…spices get bitter after a while.

      August 26, 2009 at 12:43 pm

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    • 4.  T

      “the legendary celery salt which met its demise” = LOVE.

      August 26, 2009 at 1:47 pm

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    • 5.  Hil

      Dear moms everywhere: If your spices are older than your grown children no longer living in your house, throw them out, no questions asked.

      August 26, 2009 at 4:54 pm

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    • 6.  travestine

      I won tickets to a Nelly Furtado concert once because I had curry powder from 1938 in my spice cupboard (it’s become kind of an heirloom). It’s in a tin can with a paper label and surprisingly, it still smells quite fresh! (not that I’d EVER use it!)

      August 26, 2009 at 8:50 pm

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    • 7.  Holicrazed

      I have a jar of Durkee parsley flakes from the 1950″s. It was from my gramdma’s kitchen – I’d never use it, but it has an odd sentimental value.

      August 26, 2009 at 9:36 pm

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    • 8.  julianna rose dow

      when our mom used the last of that celery salt she sent us this email:

      subject: say goodbye to an old friend

      I have to buy new celery salt today. I am putting the bottle out to pasture (recycle) as I just used the last 1/4 tsp. in the spinach casserole.

      It served me for nearly 30 long years.


      August 27, 2009 at 9:09 am

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    • 9.  Lucy

      This is brilliant! I’m glad you let us know about the end of the celery salt too.

      I believe mace is very similar to nutmeg.

      August 27, 2009 at 11:08 am

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    • 10.  ccm

      Julianna, your mom rocks. My mother also has some really old stuff in her cabinet. And, to my knowledge, she’s never hesitated to use it. Take the bay leaves, for example. Supposedly they belonged not to my grandmother, but to my GREAT-grandmother. And now they’ve been passed on to my mom who uses one or two a year in her winter chili. I’ve tried pointing out that bay leaves are technically poison, so maybe you shouldn’t tempt fate by using 70-year-old bay leaves in your soups, but to no avail. No one’s died from eating the chili yet, I guess. ;)

      August 27, 2009 at 11:10 am

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    • 11.  brandy

      I also have spices that somehow ended up in my giantic spicerack after my parents sold the house and ended up traveling around the country in an RV.

      Have NO clue as to the age of some of the spices, but since my husband has yet to have his stomach pumped, I will be blithely adding them into our dinners…

      August 27, 2009 at 3:45 pm

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    • 12.  Cara

      This sounds like my mom! She ignores MOST expiration dates. The only ones she really sticks to are milk and cheese. She has a pantry full of foods and spices that are all years old because she just keeps buying them (thanks to Sam’s Club!).

      August 27, 2009 at 11:47 pm

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    • 13.  cakeburnette

      My sister and I are terrified of our mother dying and us having to clean out her cabinets. We are 39 & 40 and believe there are canned goods from our childhood in there.

      August 28, 2009 at 11:00 am

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    • 14.  Little Lemon

      When my mother died my sister had to get rid of hundreds of those keys for sardine tins. “might come in handy”

      August 29, 2009 at 1:28 pm

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    • 15.  Sheila P

      Every time my mom goes out of town my sister secretly raids her cabinets to purge them of expired items. Last time she found an Italian dressing seasoning packet from 1973!

      August 31, 2009 at 5:19 pm

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Love, Mom