No Waste Tastes Great / Keeping An Eye On The Prize

It’s Friday Guys – time for No Waste Tastes Great

Click here to find out more about my Friday routine

Simply Being Mum’s Friday Fridge

Top Shelf – Spreads, garlic, yoghurt

Top Middle Shelf – 3 x carrots, a tiny piece of cucumber and a few grapes

Bottom Middle Shelf – Whole head of broccoli and cauliflower

Bottom Shelf – 3 x apples and 2 x satsumas

Door – Milk and 4 x eggs (housed in a decorated box! We’ve had a lot of rain this half-term – the Kids need to keep themselves amused).

So, what’s the plan today? The spreadsgarlic and yoghurt (and fruit) have a few days in them yet and will get used up.

The cucumber and grapes will get eaten at lunch today. The carrots will be chopped and some used this evening to accompany the Kids’ dinner, they are having ‘Toad in the Hole’ as I have 2 sausages (frozen) and eggs to make the batter. The remaining carrots will be used for snacks.

This leaves the cauliflower and broccoli. I’m going to get slow-cooking over the weekend. The free e-book I promised isn’t yet complete. It’s taken much longer than anticipated. So it’ll be a great double check to make sure I can follow the recipes I’ve put together. The soup will then be frozen for lunches.

No Waste Tastes Great isn’t just about a Friday inventory. For it to work effectively I have to keep my eye on the prize.

By not fully stocking my Fridge, I can always see what I have to use up. Every day I do a check.

This gains momentum as the week marches toward Friday.

So, for example yesterday I noticed I had a punnet of strawberries hanging around. I’d planned to make Jubilee jam tarts last weekend, and then didn’t get chance.

At 7pm last night I washed the strawberries, placed half in the freezer to go in my protein smoothies, and then made muffins.

An example of keeping an eye on the prize:

An example of not keeping an eye on the prize:

My ‘no waste’ cupboard skills still need some work. This potato slipped through. Fortunately it can be planted.

Which is good news because I’ve had notification that the ‘food waste collection’ program that was being trialed in my area, has been scrapped. It isn’t ‘financially viable’.

I don’t like food waste and try to avoid it, but it does happen. Now I don’t have an convenient/effective method of disposal. Any ideas?

How’s your Fridge looking this Friday? Anything to declare? Or is it nice and bare? Please share…

No Waste Tastes Great is bought to you (as always) with thanks to The Frugal Girl for the original inspiration.



    • Hi Shelley, no we don’t. This may be a hard-sell to the Hubby. I’d like to give it a go, but it needs to be unobtrusive, and most definitely not smelly! Otherwise it’ll be doomed before I begin. I had a peely bin in the kitchen, and have been banned from using it – the scraps had to go straight to recycling bin. Composting I think is going to be the best option, I just need some good options on how to proceed!

      • For years I’ve practiced what my dad calls “cowboy composting.” You basically just designate a corner of the garden as compost pit… dig a big hole and pile the dirt next to it. Every time you toss food scraps or whatever into it, you cover them with a light layer of dirt – so no smell or anything. You can turn it if you’re really energetic, but I generally just use a long pole and stick it down through the layers to introduce oxygen. When the hole has been filled up, let it winter over and the next spring it will be a fertile plot for planting! Choose a new spot for the next year and slowly work your way around the garden.

        You can also buy fancy compost bins that you turn with a crank, but since spending money goes against my nature, I’ve never tried one.

        • Cheers Cat, I’ve always wondered whether this was an option. I’ve previously buried a few scraps, but got concerned whether it could potentially attract vermin? Not sure, do you know?

        • Well, if you cover each “deposit” with dirt as you go, it’s unlikely, because there won’t be smell to attract them, but it is possible. But I don’t think it attracts them any more than the garden itself does.

          My stepmother has a metal grate that she puts over the hole – not sure what it was in it’s former life… something she salvaged out of the garbage I’m sure. You could find something like that to use… or even a piece of plywood could work – or the lid of a garbage can or something. It would be best if it was on the heavy side and sort of fit snugly down into the hole a bit so it couldn’t be easily moved by hungry little creatures!

        • p.s. If you only put vegetable matter and not meat into the compost, it’s much less likely to attract critters. Well… I don’t exactly know what sort of vermin you have there. For us the concern is raccoons, skunks, foxes and coyotes – and the occasional mountain lion or bear. The real worrisome ones are attracted by meat.

        • p.p.s. Just to let you know, in over 10 years of doing this I’ve yet to have a compost pit dug open. The only problem I’ve ever had is with mice and that was in the raised compost bin. I’ll stop blathering now…

        • Hey Cat – Not sure where this comment will end up – Thanks for all the info – no, no mountain lions around these parts ;-) the most I need to worry about are maybe foxes? Still investigating options so thank you this was great feedback!

      • Coming late to the game, I hope you see this.

        I have a very simple, lazy compost set up. There are three 18 gal Rubbermaid bins (the size doesn’t matter much, just get something that’s suitable to your scrap output and remember you can change containers as you learn what size works best for you). One is the new stuff, one is the old stuff, one is paper scraps.

        The two compost bins have drilled holes in the sides for air, and bottoms removed so liquid doesn’t accumulate. (The holes aren’t necessary but if you do, do them first. The bin gets floppy and hard to drill, if you remove the bottom first.) I put the scraps in the “new” bin, then throw on a handful of shredded paper. In the fall I shovel the “new” stuff into the “old” bin. I use the compost as I need it, or give it away if it accumulates.

        If the pile gets stinky, add more paper. Using only veggie scraps will deter critters.

  1. Can you not eat sprouting spuds?? Oh dear…. I love half term we use everything up, So my cupboards were looking a little bare :) I love the way you ‘think out the box’ i would never of dreamed of making muffins with strawberries :(

    Sharron xx

    • Hi Sharron – yes you can eat sprouting spuds. But not this one. I baked his brother last weekend, he hadn’t yet sprouted and was kinda grey inside when cooked. It wasn’t good. So I’m not risking this one, a week on.

      Muffins are best with fruit that goes very gooey when baked, it makes them very moist! I am new to baking muffins, don’t know why? But I cannot believe how easy they are and how great they turn out. I’m going to start experimenting this weekend. There’ll be white chocolate and strawberries, and also I’m going to try and bake jam in the middle so it oozes out when bitten into. Here goes!

  2. The muffins look delish! Your fridge is so immaculate and organized.
    For composting, have you looked into worm composting? The bins are small, and I understand that it smells much less than standrad composting. Many who use the worm bins keep them on the back porch, they say that they are that unobtrusive. (And you could tell the hubby that they’re just pets — squiggly, red pets). Otherwise I really like the tumbling bins. They keep critters out and odors in, plus they make compost so quickly. And I’ve seen models with two sections, so you can have one section completely full and in process, while the other is still being filled for the month. Just awful that your city has scrapped the food waste pick-up, though.

  3. Yummy looking muffins! On the food waste disposal issue, how about a compact wormery? Not too big, obtrusive or smelly, as it’s faster acting than a normal compost bin, and they can deal with food scraps that you can’t put on the compost. Or chickens?! They’re great at disposing of food waste, but could you smuggle a couple into your garden without hubby noticing?!

  4. So funny; we have broccoli and cauliflower that needs to be used up too! I’ll be making cauliflower soup with Parmesan-garlic biscuits for dinner tonight and the broccoli with tortellini in tomato sauce tomorrow. I have a huge grocery shopping trip planned for tomorrow; we’re out of so many staples I really had to think hard to put together meals this past week. It’s always interesting to me to see how many meals I can still put together with a nearly bare fridge and cupboard. I always imagine if someone were to peek into my fridge they would ask if we are in financial trouble. Actually, my father-in-law did this once!
    Sidenote: bought my running shoes. Working two minute sections of running into my morning walk. Up to ten minutes of running. Can’t believe how challenging it is and yet I can see a difference already in my fitness level.

    • Rachel – firstly a big well-done on the running! Keep it up!
      The soups sounds amazing…
      I know what you mean about people thinking ’empty’ fridges are odd. I get comments from time to time, sometimes I explain why, sometimes not!

    • Mine has a lid and keeping it closed helps, but I’ve found that the key is lining it with old newspaper or something similar – well that and emptying it regularly!

      • Hey both. Mine hasn’t smelt (yet) but I’ve stopped using it to keep the peace. However as you have, Cat, my plan was to start lining with newspaper so I didn’t have to keep washing it out! We’ll see whether it makes a come-back!

  5. I have to say, you’ve really inspired me with this stuff, and I am on a mission to use up what I have. I’m almost out of fruit, but I’m gonna eat up the apples in the bin before stocking up on anything else…. well… organic grapes are on sale at the local grocery store, so I may have to indulge, but other than that….

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