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#EXPRESSYOURSHELF FOOD WASTE CHALLENGE

October 21, 2015

So today is the last day for us on the #expressyourshelf challenge. Over the last three years we’ve certainly learnt not to waste food and when you can’t just nip into the supermarket when you fancy it you make sure to have a few ingredients on standby to make some meals.

Fresh!

Fresh!

I have a fairly small kitchen with limited storage but when I made the #notfromthesupermarket decision we discovered a wonderful Cooperative in Chorlton called Unicorn. They buy dried goods in bulk – you buy the amount you want in bags – and I invested in glass storage jars! At first I hoarded too much as I worried where I would buy from but gradually I realised it wasn’t going to be a problem.

I still keep a good stock of tinned tomatoes, fruit, fish, coconut milk, corned beef, etc. My mum always has a well stocked pantry and I definitely inherited her love for food and cooking.

The #expressyourshelf challenge has reiterated to me that it’s worth being careful with your food. It’s unacceptable to throw away food and a little organisation is all it takes.

Of course I’ve still got food in the freezer and in the cupboards and I know I can go shopping if I need to but, from the fresh items listed in my first post on the challenge, so that no food is wasted our last meal of the week tonight will use up a courgette, a pepper and an onion to make a Red Lentil and Vegetable Biriani.

My tips would be:

* Plan your shopping list (don’t impulse buy)

* Build up a supply of long life basics (rice, pasta, pulses etc) and some tinned foods

* Take advantage of the seasons and buy fresh foods appropriately when they are cheaper (or even forage for berries, windfall apples etc!)

* Make occasional bulk meals to chill or freeze for when you’re busy to avoid the need for a take out or supermarket dash.

* Consider buying from independents – they are happy to sell you smaller amounts to avoid waste – if you are cooking for one or two this can save you money.

* Don’t waste bread – our home made bread keeps better than supermarket bread but is certainly too precious to waste. We make a conscious effort to use it up – even making it into breadcrumbs for a gratin or meatloaf.

* Don’t waste bananas! Make them into a smoothie or banana loaf.

If you’ve not tried the No Food Waste Challenge yet give it a try and #Expressyourshelf.

Save Money Too!

Save Money Too!

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