One of the top reasons to invest in quality spice grinders is that you can reuse them again and again. Glass bottles will last for many years if they are properly cleaned between uses. You don’t need any expensive ingredients or complicated equipment, either. In addition to storing your favourite whole spices, you can also use your grinders for other purposes once the bottles are cleaned and dried.
In this short guide, we’ll take a look at how you can clean and reuse spice grinders so that they last as long as possible.
Repurposing Your Old Glass Spice Grinders
Before we begin, it is important to note that while glass grinder bottles will last a long time, plastic bottles may not last as long. These can be reused for a while, but as plastic absorbed odours and is more subject to wear and tear; they likely won’t be the best choice for long-term repurposing. You can however clean and recycle your old plastic bottles. Flip tops and grinder lids may also need to be replaced if you are reusing your grinder bottles for spices. The good news is that you can buy separate lids and closers from a spice grinder supplier such as Global Grinders.
Some tips for cleaning and reusing your bottles include the following:
- Soak thoroughly in hot water. For a simple yet effective natural solution, mix a little bit of dish soap with some bicarbonate of soda and a bit of white vinegar. This mixture will clean and remove odours. You will find it easier to remove labels on glass after a good soak as well. Leave in this soapy mixture for a few hours, or even overnight. Afterwards, you can wash as normal in the sink.
- Dry completely before using the bottle. Set the bottles on a kitchen towel or cloth or on a draining board. Allow to air-dry completely before reusing the bottles. Trapped moisture can result in spoilage if you plan to use the bottles for new spices. Moisture can also cause salt to crystallise or sweat. Leave for a good few hours in a ventilated space so that the bottles have enough time to dry on the inside.
- Don’t forget to clean the lids and grinder tops as well. These can be soaked along with your bottles and then left to dry. When drying the flip top lids, leave these open so that air can travel through the top without any moisture being trapped in the top’s hinges or lid. Keep the plastic away from direct sunlight, to preserve the life of the closures.
- Once bottles are clean and dry, add your spices. Try your favourite salt varieties, pink or black peppercorns, coriander seeds, dried herbs, cardamom or any other spice that you enjoy. Visit your local spice market and buy your spices fresh. These are often better quality than pre-packaged spices you will find at a supermarket, and often have more flavour.
- Or, reuse for non-spicy things. In addition to spice, there are many other non-spice things you can grind in a grinder. Sugar, Dorito’s, roasted sunflower or sesame seeds, Cornflakes poppy seeds, flaxseed, rice and even dried insects, if you are so inclined. Who says you have to limit your grinder to spices, after all?
Whatever you plan to do with your spice grinders once they’re clean and dried, remember that you can find a huge range of bottles, grinders and lids right here at Global Grinders.
A good pepper grinder is a must-have for any kitchen. While most people use freshly ground pepper to add taste to their food, you might be surprised that pepper has a number of health benefits that make it an essential addition to your meals.
Freshly ground whole spices are a simple way to flavour food without the need for artificial flavourings, sugar and high levels of sodium. They can also add a great deal of complexity to a variety of dishes – both sweet and savoury. Pepper is one such spice that is used all over the world in many different dishes. Pre-ground pepper comes in black and white varieties, and whole peppercorns come in black, white and green (or pink, which is similar to green in its lighter strength). While ground pepper tastes good, it is the whole peppercorns that offer the most benefits from a health perspective.
Why Should You Use Your Pepper Mill Grinder Every Day?
If you are not already grinding your own fresh pepper in a pepper mill grinder, now is a great time to invest in a good grinder. There are many health benefits offered by this aromatic spice, including the following:
- Potential cancer prevention properties. Studies done at the University of Michagan Cancer Center in the United States showed that a chemical compound found in peppercorns known as piperine may be able to prevent the formation of breast cancer tumours. These studies are on-going, but research to date indicates that this spice’s ability to fight cancer are increased when paired with turmeric – another powerful spice.
- Cold-fighting properties. A natural decongestant, pepper contains chemicals that cause runny noses, which happens when its chemical compounds irritate the mucus membranes. This means that it is effective in clearing blocked noses and stuffy nasal passages. Dr Neil Schachter from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and the author of The Good Doctor’s Guide to Colds and Flu advises using a dash of freshly ground pepper in comforting chicken soup when trying to clear a cold.
- Digestion aid properties. Pepper boosts the hydrochloric acid secretion within the stomach, which helps to aid digestion. This in turn prevents tummy bugs, constipation and colic. This spice is also able to prevent intestinal gas, and promote sweating and urination, which helps clear toxins. As it is carminative, forcing gas out from the body downwards instead of upwards where it strains organs and the chest cavity, it also helps gas to be expels more easily and naturally.
- Antibacterial properties. Pepper helps the body to ward off infections and even insect bites. It also helps to clean arteries by scraping excess cholesterol from the arterial walls; thereby aiding heart health. It can even be applied topically to the skin to help remove impurities. Just be sure to use with caution however – some people may have a skin reaction to pepper.
- Antioxidant properties. Pepper is considered a powerful antioxidant, and is able to fight free radical damage that has links to cancer, heart and liver problems. Antioxidants can protect the body and skin from many different health issues, as well as the effects of aging.
Add pepper to your diet, and reap the many rewards that this power spice has to offer. Remember – buying your spices whole and grinding them in good quality spice grinders or pepper mills is the best way to get the full benefit that whole spices have to offer.