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Date: 8 August 2014. Budget Spice Shelf (costs less than $1)

janice142
 

I met a fellow who invited me over to his home for several meals and boy, oh boy, that man can cook! Moreover, he used spices with aplomb. I want to be like that some day so bought a variety of additional spices. (If only buying them would have improved my cooking...) The problem I ended up with was that I did not have a secure place for the bottles. That simply will not work aboard a boat.
 

If buying galley goods would improve my cooking I would be all set by now and you would be calling me the Julia Child of the Waterway. It is sort of like my buying books thinking I shall have the time to read them. Of that I am guilty as well, though with my Kindle I am at least not adversely effecting the waterline. It is unsafe for my budget to enter a used book store. The same is true for an art store (how many paint brushes does one miniaturist need?!) or fabric shop for that matter. This is a sickness and I do not wish to seek recovery. There is too much fun to be had so...


Of course I have more time than money but more than that, finding the perfect shelf is not so easy. There are a lot out there -- and the makers are Mighty Proud* of their products.

*Mighty Proud translates to "expensive" in case you wondered.
 

 

The Original Spice Shelves

 

My original spice shelves fit perfectly under my sink on the right side locker door and I envisioned something similar on the left door for my latest. The first (and second) were made from a Tupperware cake container with the center part removed. This works very well. As a matter of fact, it is better than my newest creation that can best be described as good enough!

 
I removed the middle third of the cake box.

 


Doing this at anchor, the first problem was I had no cake container available. I did have a knock-off food storage box. It did not seal well and consequently was not of much use. However it had spice shelf potential and would suffice. The container was "good enough" and rather than wait for perfection, I chose to finish the project immediately.
 

 

Spice Shelf for Less than a Dollar

 

First I checked the depth of the container by laying the spice bottles on my dinette. The box fit over them nicely with no bulges. Perfection.
 

Then I turned it on edge and cut off the long side with my scissors. By leaving about four inches I know that even in rough weather, everything will stay put. I needed access from the top and now I have that.
 

Next, from my bag of tricks (aka the second drawer in my bookshelf) I removed a piece of stainless that is bendable. I had mentioned this item in the Mosquitoes (engine room vent screening) article. You do need something similar incidentally. Of course if the only tool you own is a hammer, soon everything begins to look like a nail...
 

I heated the end on my propane stove, then poked it through the plastic. Yes, I could have used a drill. This was much faster and leaves a nice hole too.

 
 

With the addition of four screws I attached the container to the
inside of my left locker door under the sink. It is almost perfect:

 

 


What is wrong you may ask? Well, the bottom as you can see has a slight curvature. Thus my spices do not sit properly erect. I know -- this is a little enough thing. I did not notice the curve prior to making my spice shelf. You might be more satisfied if your container has a flat bottom side. I know I would be!


In retrospect, I probably could have cut this container in half lengthwise and had two racks for spices. Because I only had locker door space for one, I opted for the deeper size. This is more secure and a bit of overkill as well.


What is correct is that this little container fits the spice bottles nicely. They will not jiggle while underway. They are now handy and easy to access and therefore more likely to be used.

 

And who knows? Perhaps my cooking will improve with this addition to the galley aboard Seaweed.
 

I'm wondering how many spices you have and use regularly.
And, do you keep all your spices in one rack, or multiple locations such as I have to use?
 

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2014, 2023

Categories:  Boat Talk, Books, Galley, Money, Organizing, Recommendations

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