I cook and bake quite a lot, so I need to have a lot of dry goods on hand in my kitchen all the time (things like flour, corn meal, rice, sugar, oatmeal, etc.)
I bought what I thought were good quality, air-tight sealed containers, but I still have an occasional problem with flies/moths getting inside them (they especially love corn meal!).
What do you recommend that is truly air-tight with an effective seal to prevent this atrocity?
Help me DLers. Hold me, David.
Like you, after a bunch of trial and error, I came back to Tupperware. Luckily I have a ton of storage so that none of it is visible, other than a stainless steel canister that coffee beans are stored in - called (brand name) coffee keeper , coffee jail or something. Switching back to Tupperware I haven't had a single problem.
Thanks R1, I will check out Tupperware.
R2, Oxo is what I currently use, and the moths are penetrating the sealed lids.
The problem is, the moth larvae are already in the items you bring into the house. (No container can keep them out -- they're already there! However, containers can keep them spreading from one item to another.) There is a legally permissible amount that inevitably is present in grains, beans, flour, and other things. So, there is no way to prevent them from coming into your house.
A couple of solutions: (1) freeze vulnerable ingredients for five days. (Stick them in your freezer.) This kills the larvae. You can then put them out on the shelf (2) Don't store anything for a long period of time. The larvae, which inevitably are present in your food, will not have time to develop. Go through your pantry items frequently.
Here's a link that gives practical information.
I really don't like buying from Hobby Lobby or buying from China but they have many really great glass containers for storage. The ones I buy have Brushed Metal screw on lids and match if you have stainless steel appliances. I mainly use them for storing pastas, and they look great on display on the shelves I have in the kitchen. This week they are 50% off so a 37-Ounce Glass Jar is $2.15. They come in four sizes from tall enough to hold spaghetti, to about 4 inches tall.
Also, I do what r4 suggests - all dry goods go in the freezer for a couple of days.
Insect larvae can travel along the threads of screwcap lids.
Thanks, R5. That actually makes the most sense, i.e., that there were already larvae in the products when I bought them. My Oxo containers appear to be completely air-tight, so instead of spending hundreds more dollars in containers, I will probably throw all the dry goods out, buy more in smaller quantities, and freeze them first.
OP and R4 I've had problems with moths in Lock and Lock, too, but maybe, as people have mentioned, they were already there. I also use the FoodSaver canisters and their vacuum sealer, but sometimes the seal doesn't stay tightly closed for more than few days.
I switched to glass years ago after falling for one dishwasher-safe, no-stain claim after another.
Pyrex for me.
Freezer to oven (and to table if need be.) No worries about plastic residue leeching into my comestibles.
Of the plastics, I will only use Lock 'n' Lock off QVC -- but I NEVER reheat in it.
Oh and wash everything by hand if you want your containers to last for years and years. Dishwashers kill plastic containers and plastic lids over time.
Zip locks in the freezer for flour, pasta, nuts, and herbs. If you've ever lived in an apartment with bugs, you'll never keep dry goods in cupboards.
Glass Corningware for extra batch meals
My big plastic bowls are reserved for salads and they're from the early 80s - probably leaching chemicals as I type.
I keep meaning to freeze milk into cubes like I freeze extra stock.
I bought those containers that lock to put all of my various cupcake sprinkles in and they went stale in no time. So much for locking in freshness.