Let me give you $1,000.-.
I’m convinced noone wants to throw out food. It just happens. Life gets busy and all of a sudden we are faced with a fridge half full with things that meant to get used but didn’t. Now what?
Aussies throw out $8 Billion worth of food every year. Most of it is fresh food and leftovers. The average aussie household wastes around $1,000.- a year on food that lands in the bin.
Why does it get wasted?
- We cook too much food.
- We don’t know how to use leftovers.
- We don’t check the cupboard or fridge before going out shopping.
- We buy take away at the last minute instead of using what we have at home.
- We don’t stick to our shopping lists and buy too much food.
I hate wasting food, but I’m certainly guilty of most of those points above. Because we are not robots and sometimes our good intentions don’t last the distance. We get busy, we get sick, we get tired…
Noone would ever turn down an extra $1000.- though, right?
So let’s make a pact today!
No more food waste.
Let’s love our leftovers!!
But money is not my biggest driving force in making sure I throw out the least amount of food possible. My driving force for cutting down on food waste is the belief that we are privileged and with privilege comes responsibility:
With the privilege of being able to choose what food we put on the table, comes the responsibility of not letting it go to waste.
Leftovers are the gift you didn’t know you had.
Often we are told to be more mindful and grateful in our everyday lives, which in turn will help us to be happier and more at peace. I believe that to be true, so today I would like to invite you to think of leftovers as a gift. The meal that is already half prepared for you. Or the ingredients that you already have on hand as opposed to having to plan a meal from scratch. Wilting veggies in the fridge? Excellent, that is a buddha bowl waiting to happen. Leftover pasta? A yummy frittata for lunch.
6 ways to make a lovely meal out of your leftovers
The day before your big weekly shop, raid the fridge and see what needs using up. Here are my favourite ways to use anything leftover:
Fry up a flavourful base (onion, carrot, leek, bacon, saussage meat or salami all work well – whatever you have on hand), then toss in all the wilting veggies from the crisper.
Whizz up some parsley, lemon and garlic and stir through for extra freshness.
Sandwiches and Wraps
Anything will be great in a sandwich or wrap. I love roasted vegetables spread on as a base and pile on whatever else needs using up.
Add a little sauce of mayonnaise and lemon juice and it will be like the best deli sandwich/wrap ever.
My number one choice for using up all the leftovers.
Place couscous in a bowl and top with boiling water. Roast veggies on a tray with a bit of olive oil and any herbs you like. Fluff up the couscous with a fork and then chop in literally everything you have on hand, raw or roasted. Dress with olive oil, lemon juice salt and pepper.
Noone will recognize this as leftovers!
It will simply be a fancy salad.
Very similar concept. Simply boil your grain of choice, pop it in a bowl, add all the leftover veggies and meats you’ve got floating around and top with a nice dressing.
If you’ve got a couple of leftovers from meals (as in lasagne etc), a little dinner buffet is a great way to snack it all away. Add a big green salad for freshness and start the next day with a clean food slate.
Since my little man added an egg allergy to our family I can’t use this anymore, but I used to love making frittata out of leftover pasta and vegetables. So good.
Quiche is also great and you can hide literally everything you want in there.
There you go! 6 ways to use up any leftovers you may have floating around. Delicious, nutritious and relatively quick and simple. We will have saved up those $1,000.- in no time!
Do you use leftovers up regularly and have tips to share? Please leave a comment below, I’d love to know!
Be kind to yourself.