Friday, 10 February 2012

Waste Not Want Not

'Waste not want not' - a proverb dating way back to the 16th century meaning that 'the less we waste the less we lack in the future'.

There is a lot of food wastage in the kitchen and therefore money wastage.  Often I will find food in the fridge that was perfectly good when it went in there but now is beyond the used by date or safe eating time and so it goes in the bin.  In these days where nearly everyone has a freezer it is such a waste to not plan for the left overs to have a purpose.

Here are some of the wastage things from our kitchen that we make use from.

Large Onions
The last bag of onions I bought had some really large onions in it and most recipes call for '1 onion'.  Sometimes if I am only cooking a small batch or if the onion is really large I only use half an onion and am left with the other half.  I found that dicing it up and freezing it works really well and carries the added bonus of just getting the diced onion out of the freezer and 'throwing it in' the next dish.

Diced Onion ready for the freezer
These two onions produced 3 bags of diced onion ready to freeze and be on hand for adding to a meal quickly.  Two onions usually equal two meals but now it will do for three.  If you use this method on your 1kg bag of medium or large onions you should save about 4 or 5 meals of onions each time, reducing the amount you use and reducing your grocery bill.

Frozen left over pizza sauce
I buy an organic tomato pasta sauce in a jar from Aldi and it makes a fabulous pizza base sauce, however once the jar is opened and we have used a few tablespoons of sauce on the pizza bases, I am left with about half a jar which will grow mold in just a few short days even when kept in the fridge.  I freeze the sauce in small sandwich size ziplock bags just one pizza base amount at a time and defrost one when we need it.

Left over wine - yes really!
Left over wine easily freezes and can be added into casseroles and stews.  I know unthinkable isn't it that there would be any left, but there you have it  :D

Discarded broccoli stem
I used to throw this end (over half the bunch that I paid for by the kilo) of the broccoli away once I had used all the florets  but when I found out that it was good to eat I now add it to my stirfry's.

Trimmed and sliced broccoli stem
There are about 2 cups of extra vegetable goodness in the meal now which helps it to go further.   I like to have leftovers to take to work for lunch the next day.

Muesli bars that didn't come out of the pan nicely
And of course there are my muesli bars from this post that didn't come out of the tray in nice little muesli bar shapes.  The mixture was a little sticky so I rolled them into ball shapes instead and the kids love them anyway.

Other tips:
Left over rice freezes quite well or can be turned into fried rice with just a few veggies from the fridge.

Vegetables can be made into soups if they are starting to look like they won't be used before they need to be thrown out.  Then you can freeze the soup for another day.

Pumpkin and sweet potato can be cooked, mashed and frozen to add to cakes and to thicken soups.

Do you have things that you have found other uses for in your kitchen?  I would love some more ideas.

1 comment:

  1. Those are great tips. I myself barely throw away any food. I think there is always a use for it and freezing leftovers is also very convenients. If I am gonna travel for some days I chop my veggies and freeze them so they don't turn bad. :-)


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