I am still in the midst of an early "spring cleaning" of my kitchen, and this week has been the spices cabinets (yes, more than one). I found (because the design of the cabinets are too deep) duplicates of many of my spices (over twenty duplicates) which is no problem because I have friends who can use them. I also found many expired spices (Yes, Bittman says throw them out after a year, but I'm talking two- to three- year old ground spices in shaker containers. Some didn't even have a fragrance left.).
The (former) schoolteacher in me could not bear to throw the containers out, so I opened the 14 or so ones from obsolete spices that I had and shook or scraped out the contents, hand-scrubbed all of them and dried them out (I don't have a dishwasher and some were pretty gritty). Now I have fourteen (different sized) lovely shaker jars with lids. And I'm wondering... what the heck do I do with all these things?
Thought about buying Powdered Paint and some butcher paper, then using my basting brush to coat the paper with a thin layer of water. I could then have a different color in each container and throw it on, creating modern art. But that sounds kinda messy, and I have no free wall space to display my masterpieces...
Do any of my fellow CH'ers have more practical uses for the small shaker jars? I've already invested time and money (most of the cost of the spices is paying for the jar anyway) into this, and am not turning back. Any ideas, not necessarily culinary (but great if culinary) for using the empty spice shaker containers would be greatly appreciated!