May 1, 2009

Food Friday

No picture, because... no waste! Yay. I'd like to thank my husband, for eating every last little portion of leftovers and shrunken tomatoes this week.

We did well this week because I was determined. But over the past two months we have had a lot less waste in general and I think there are 3 main reasons:

1. I'm buying less food. I really am only planning 3 meals a week: one with a healthy fresh fish, one like chili or soup that yields plenty of leftovers, and once a week my husband makes pizza or pasta (lucky me). Our schedules are too variable to plan more than that, so we have to be flexible. The other nights we either eat leftovers, eat pantry meals (I always have plenty on hand for several different choices), or we go out to a restaurant or a friend's house.

2. The Eat Me! section of the refrigerator is still working beautifully. We make sure we put anything that needs to be eaten in that spot before it goes bad. It has its limits because I don't want to put lettuce there, so we still have to keep our eye on the crisper, and some days it seems like the entire refrigerator needs to be jammed into that section, but overall it's been working great.

3. When I first started thinking about wasting less food, from reading Wasted Food and The Frugal Girl, I started labelling our leftovers. That has also helped tremendously because we haven't had any little containers end up in the back of the refrigerator in a state of decay.

I also have to acknowledge that this is easier for us because we don't have children. I really admire anyone who could pull off little or no food waste with kids. That requires a great deal more planning and commitment than I've attempted. So bravo to you moms (and dads!) out there. I also have to say it would be much harder if my husband were a picky eater. He will eat almost anything I cook, and often raves about simple meals. And I'm sure not every husband would go for that "Eat Me!" section. I know a lot of people won't even eat leftovers. Luckily we actually do like them (if we liked the meal in the first place!)

How was your week? Do you have any tips or tricks for reducing food waste you'd like to tell us about? Please share your thoughts, ideas, questions, and concerns in the Comments section. And if you had a lot of food waste, don't be embarrassed. The first step is paying attention.


Non Consumer Girl said...

Great work Angela!

We had "leftover" dinner last night. By that I mean that the 3 of us all had different leftovers. I had leftover chinese takeaway, Mr Techno had left over roast dinner and veggies and Barbie Girl had left over pasta!

This only happens once in a while, but it has taken care of a lot of food that would otherwise have gone to waste.

Marylyn said...

This sounds awful, but it really wasn't bad: I mixed leftover hot cereal (by then it was cold) with half a can of leftover tuna, and fried it as if it were a salmon cake. The cereal was multi-grain, but corn was featured, so it tasted familiar. I garnished the patty with some sun-dried tomato mayonnaise. This was just for me, a late dinner.

Kristen@TheFrugalGirl said...

Woohoo! Good job, you!

Anonymous said...

i made glorified mac and cheese tonight. Boxed mac and cheese with leftover ham and "Eat Me!" veggies. Also added a little sour cream and some "iffy" cream cheese. YUMMY
I think Marylyn should get an award for Most Creative for her tuna cereal burger!

Angela said...

Non Consumer Girl- It definitely helps if you like the leftovers you're eating, so your method increases that likelihood...

Marylyn- I agree with the Frugal Musician that you get the "most creative" award. And believe it or not, it doesn't sound awful to me! I love salmon patties, fritters, anything along those lines...

Kristen- Thanks for coming by!

Frugal Musician- I love it! You could add almost ANYTHING to mac 'n cheese and it would be good. I'm going to remember that.