Tag Archives: avoiding food waste

Food Waste Friday – 3-5-2010

Let’s take a look, shall we?

Um, wait, did a picture load for you?  Me neither.  It’s not because we didn’t waste any food this week (although our waste was negligible, I’m proud to say) but rather that it’s 10:41 p.m. on Friday and I have not yet taken a photo.  Now, with it being, you know, night and therefore dark, the pic will have to be taken tomorrow.  I have a flash, of course, but the pics turn out much better with some day light.

The narrative version:

Just three lonely little items:  a sealed bag of basmati rice from some old, old, OLD boxed Indian meals, sad and limp egg noodles and, of course, a grape tomato.  There were actually two bags of rice.  I opened one to use in a casserole and it smelled funky, so I tossed it immediately and saved the twin for the as-yet-untaken FWF photo.  I suppose the noodles could get dumped into chicken broth with a few chopped up veggies for quickie soup, but it’s just postponing the inevitable disposal because I’m not feeling inspired about chicken soup.

There are a few leftovers-in-waiting that could appear here next week if we don’t eat them over the weekend, including some London broil.  It’s my challenge to eat those bits.  Does it count as waste if I grind it up for my dogs?

As always, if you blogged about your food waste this week, check out others who do the same on www.thefrugalgirl.com.

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Resolution Update for March

Two months in to the new year and we’re still more or less on track with our resolutions.  Here’s the blow-by-blow update.

  1. Reduce overall monthly expenses by 10%.  The final grocery total for February was so low that I think I must have made a mistake.  I came in about $97 under the 10% reduction goal.  John thinks it’s because I make so much stuff from scratch.  I think we had a really well-stocked freezer.  As far as the utilities, it’s a mixed bag.  Cable is way down.  Gas is about the same.  Electric is balance-billed.  Water is down a little.  Still looking for more economies there.  Our negligible clothing budget has been more than ample this month as I stocked up on kids’ clothes at a big tag sale– and got some free stuff too!  Free is my favorite price!  Among the freebies is an Ann Taylor skirt for me.  Just have to move the button.
  2. Move forward with our adoption. The social worker who taught our MAPP class will be doing our homestudy.  This is good, because she already knows us.  She is coming over a week from Friday with a preliminary first draft.  However, this is bad because we met a little patootie at an adoption party this past Sunday who we are really interested in/taken with but our worker thinks it is a bad idea.  He is only a year older than Maddie and has  some “digestive issues.”  Our worker said that she knows that we can do it and step up, but she doesn’t want to put us in that position because it would be hard work.  Uh, I never thought this was going to be easy . . .  right now, I’m really torn about how to proceed on this.
  3. Make more things from scratch. Made yogurt last night, made bread tonight.  Back to work tomorrow and that’s when the big test begins.  I’ve been meaning to make chocolate cupcakes for over a week.
  4. Landscape. Eh.  Just let it be spring.
  5. Reduce our paper towel habit. I think this is better.  I’m pretty consistent about using rags instead of disposables (unless I’m cleaning up a doggy accident or cleaning the toilet.) John still loves paper towels.

Tomorrow is my first day back to work.  It was supposed to be today but I had some kind of stomach bug.  Psychosomatic?  Details on the actual first day to follow.  Stay tuned!

Food Waste Friday – 2-26-10

I hang my head this week.  Look at this.

My worst week yet.  Let’s start at 12 o’clock high (well, a bit past 12.)

The cursed cilantro.  I just couldn’t do it anymore.

In the zip lock bag, gray and smelly bacon.  The bag is being tossed as well.

Moving down, leftover Thai chicken.  Usually we eat and eat and eat this because it is so good.  This time, not so much.  I suspect the absence of coconut milk (I didn’t have any, so I used half-and-half instead) reduced the usual deliciousness.

To the left, remains of Indian takeout.  Two orders of tikka is too much, one is not enough. This was spicier than usual, so not good lunch fare for Madame.

Above it, a melange of food past it’s prime.  Dried mango from over a year ago, the overly dense bread from last week, a forgotten half of a roll, the omnipresent grape tomato and four blackberries with white mold.

Sigh.

I think, though, I have finally learned a lesson.  If the leftovers do not get eaten for lunch the next day, they need to go in the freezer in individual serving sizes to be future lunches.  That’s what I did with shepherd’s pie and brown-sugar encrusted pork loin this week.

How did you do?  If you chronicled your food waste, cruise on over to www.thefrugalgirl and post.

Food Waste Friday – 2-19-10

First, what’s not here– grape tomatoes and cilantro.  This is because I didn’t buy grape tomatoes and the cilantro is still hanging in there.

This is what we did waste:

On the left, cous cous.  Buried underneath, most of a chicken breast. It’s frozen and I’m too impatient to chip it out for better viewing. Eating left over chicken after more than two days seems dicey to me.  I thought it would be a lunch for John to take to work, but he didn’t.  Sigh.  The chicken was dressed in a cilantro rub, so I did waste some cilantro but only on a technicality.

On the right, a burnt waffle.  I made these for breakfast on Saturday and this one had grown cold by the time I wanted to eat it.  So I popped it in the toaster in a resuscitation effort.  You can see how well that turned out. Sigh again.

Overall, I think we are doing much better at using up what we buy thanks to the wonder of Food Waste Friday and the magic of virtual peer pressure!  😉

Coming attractions on FWF may be a loaf of bread that didn’t rise adequately.  I’m hanging on to it for time being.  Any ideas on uses for overly dense bread?  Dare I make croutons?

Food Waste Friday – 2-12-10

Oooh, the date is a true mathematical sentence!  2 minus 12 is indeed negative 10!  I’m such a dork.

Let’s start with a guessing game.  What is pictured below?

If you guessed MOLD, you are right! There was a clue in yesterday’s post that this was coming, so kudos to you if you remembered that. Mold is but one of today’s cast members in the gripping saga that is Food Waste Friday at AFTHOTW HQ.  Here’s the full take.

The big, blackened mass in the container on the left is a burned and leftover for too long omelet.  It was a good omelet and yet we were not inspired to eat the burned part. I blame the weird heat pattern on my stove top, caused by the toddler open flame guard. This will be a treat for the dogs this morning, so it’s not technically wasted.

On top of that is a dried up grapefruit half that I resolved to eat at least three times and then didn’t.  I think I might have actually consumed it if I had cut it the right way initially.  Lesson learned.

Moving clockwise , we have some limp lettuce from a salad a few days back.  The other veggies are still ok (and in fact being consumed now by M as a breakfast supplement) but the lettuce didn’t make it.  Moment of silence for the lettuce please.

Ahem. . . on top of that is the omnipresent grape tomato with funkiness on the underside.  There’s always one.

Finally, the salsa with the mold.  I bought this salsa before becoming a FWF poster, so it was before I was super conscious of what was in my fridge and how long it had been there. I think I will just make my own salsa, in the necessary quantities for the moment, in the future.

The triumph of the week is surviving cilantro.  See how pretty and lush it still is!

I’ve been storing it as you see it, florist style, with a plastic bag over it (like Simply Recipes recommends) in my refrigerator. It’s still fresh, but I’m tired of using it. The solution is to grow my own, which I certainly will once there is consistent sun and non-frigid temps.

Need to get moving– big day today.  Lunch with Grandma and Great Grandma!

Have a wonderful day!

k and the troops

Menu Planning Monday – week of February 1

After I plan this week, I’m going to the grocery store to fill in the blanks.

Monday – grilled chicken chorizo over pasta, homemade applesauce (before the apples are too far gone)

Tuesday – tacos (need to buy shredded cheese, lettuce, tomatoes– basically, I’ve got shells and ground turkey)

Wednesday – chicken and dumplings

Thursday – omelettes

Friday – I’ll be in Connecticut with the kids, so John is on his own

Saturday – pasta carbonara (easy and quick since I’m coming back from CT in the afternoon)

Sunday – meatloaf and mashed potatoes

Meal planning rocks my socks!

The Potato Problem

This week, I discovered I had three bags of potatoes in the house– one I purchased because it was on my list, one left behind by our now absent housemate and one I purchased because it was on sale for 99 cents and potatoes keep forever.  Right?  WRONG!

I suppose they will keep nearly forever if they don’t come into the house all ready yucky.

Lower left is a spud that broke in two pieces because of grossness.

Then, on the right, is a forgotten piece of pot roast.  It’s the pink stuff growing on it that concerns me.  The dogs were still pretty interested in it.

This week’s victory in avoiding food waste was mini pizzas made on the tail end of a loaf of homemade bread.  A hit with everyone (but I forgot to take a picture.)

For those who remember from last week, I discarded most of what Shawn left behind.  Ramen noodles (not even really a food as far as I’m concerned), freezer-burnt french fries, unidentified meat products, hardened brown sugar and booze.

If you kept track of your food waste this week, cruise on over to www.thefrugalgirl.com and post.