Today I made a colourful and nutritious Taco Bowl by utilising the leftover ingredients from Tacos from the night before, and it was delicious. I am a firm believer in doing what we can to reduce food waste. Each year about one third of the food across the globe is wasted, and according to Food Bank, if just 25% of this waste could be saved, it would be enough to feed the 821 million people that are currently going hungry around the world. Feeding the world may seem out of our reach, but we can do our part in the kitchen to make sure that as little food as possible goes in the bin.
Not only is reducing food waste great for the community and the environment, you will be amazed at how much money you can save by making some simple changes when shopping and in the kitchen. Check out some of my quick and easy ways to Reduce Food Waste below.
Tip 1 - Only shop for what you need - I know, this can be really difficult to do sometimes, especially when your browsing the aisles and seeing the enormous selection of enticing foods available. But creating a weekly meal plan and making a list of ingredients and quantities that you need will do wonders in helping you to stay focused on only the items that you need to buy, and preventing impulse purchasing.
Tip 2 - Blend and Freeze fresh herbs in ice trays - Cooking with fresh herbs creates so much more flavour that using herbs from a jar. but have you ever noticed that you can rarely use the whole bunch before it begins to spoil? You can extend the life of your fresh herbs by putting them through the blender and putting them into ice cube trays with extra virgin olive oil. Next time you need fresh herbs for a meal you are making, you can take exactly the amount of ice cubes you need to make another flavoursome dish that everyone can enjoy.
Tip 3 - Blend left over bread into bread crumbs to make schnitzels - Use the leftover ends, as well as any bread that is about to spoil to make bread crumbs to make schnitzels. Put bread into a blender and blend to the consistency you wish. Bread crumbs can also be frozen into portions to extend the life of the breadcrumbs.
Tip 4 - Check what ingredients need to be used in your refrigerator/freezer before meal planning. Before you sit down and plan your meals for the week, check the refrigerator for ingredients that are about to spoil and need to be used, so that you can create dishes that include these ingredients and prevent them from being thrown away.
Tip 5 - Freeze left over meals into one or two person portions sizes - If you are like me, there are some days that you just don't feel like cooking. Or you might be just time poor from a busy day, or not feel like stepping out to the store. Freezing any leftovers meals into portions provide a back up plan for times like this and a great way to prevent wastage. Warm them in the oven or microwave and enjoy for lunch or dinner.
freezers are great at extending the life of our food. When freezing, make sure you write what the food is so that you can easily identify it when you want to take use it, as well as a date so that you can use before spoiling.