Zero Waste Week Day 4: chopping & more chopping

So, yesterday, having posted my blog a little earlier than usual and finding myself child-free for a couple of hours (a rarity mid-week), I set to work in the kitchen. I was motivated to be a Zero Hero by reducing my food waste and, let’s be honest, to have some material to work with for my ramblings today…

zero waste week 2013 header logo


With a kitchen that was already overstocked, then being inundated with a freshly-delivered veg box, I decided I needed to reduce the volume of food I had. My aim was to turn the veg box from a wild array of leaves, fruits and shoots into something I could work with.

The first thing I tackled was dinner, attracted by the idea of using up veg and actually doing something that needed done anyway.

I chose to make a Vegetable Crumble which incorporated a pleasingly large pile of veg….

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….and tastes rather delicious too (so delicious, I forgot to take a photo until we’d eaten some)

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As I chopped and peeled and simmered, thrillingly comments started coming in on the blog and tweets pinged their arrival on my phone letting me know what some of my unidentifiable items were from yesterday’s post.

I love getting comments and tweets and somehow reducing my food waste looked like it could become an achievable goal.

Next I tacked the newly identified Romanesco Broccoli. I washed and chopped it and put it back in the fridge to use later in the week – knowing that it’s now prepared means I am much more likely to actually use it plus, according to Twitter it’s something quite special!

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While all of this activity was going on I decided to set a malt loaf going in the breadmaker to use up some treacle and malt extract that has been hanging around in the cupboard for ages.

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I’m glad I did as it’s really tasty and means we can eat it instead of the non-perishable biscuits in the cupboard that are not in need of urgent attention.
I have been a bit concerned about the 40 (FORTY!!!) plums that came in the veg box.

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On arrival they were already looking as if they only had a day or two left until they would go past their best. I searched the internet for recipes but most of them would have turned the plums into something sweet and we just don’t need any more sugary things in the house at the moment! Before Zero Waste Week, I’m pretty sure that we’d have eaten a few of them and then they’d have turned to mush and I’d have regretfully thrown them in the compost bin. Yesterday, however, I checked the net for information on how to freeze them and I did just that. I actually feel a bit silly that I’ve never done anything like that before. It’s good to know they’re there and one day I’ll stew them or turn them into a crumble and I’ll feel pretty pleased with myself.

What was that? Did I hear you wonder if I will actually use the plums or just throw them out when I find them covered in ice in the freezer in a year? Actually weirdly, I’m really good at using up the stuff in my freezer. I have a strict defrosting schedule that involves me marking the date of the next defrost in the calendar and then I have another system whereby I list everything and make sure I use it all up before the big day. GEEK. In my defence, I used to know someone who worked in catering, they passed on horror stories about the evils of undefrosted freezers, it got to me – don’t ask!

Moving on…

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I attacked this massive savoy cabbage (ignored the fact that I had to rehouse this little guy in the process),

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washed, chopped it and stored it in a Tupperware in the fridge. I roasted it for tonight’s dinner and we all enjoyed it.

Then I boiled some eggs, converted them to egg mayonnaise

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and washed some grapes ready for eating today.

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That, I decided was quite enough work for one day.

It strikes me that it would have been easier to have been a Zero Hero in my student days when all I’d have needed to do was bin the pizza box and make sure I’d used up all of the triangles of Dairylea…Life moves on though, I have a responsibility to my family and in terms of food waste, I have a responsibility to the environment.

See you tomorrow.

For previous posts on this topic, see:

Can I be a zero hero?

Revved up & raring to go

Day 1: what a lot of food

Day 2: leftovers, limp leaves & lunch

Day 3:the dreaded veg…



6 thoughts on “Zero Waste Week Day 4: chopping & more chopping

  1. blimey, I’m exhausted reading what you’ve been up to. What an amazing week you’ve had and it looks like you’ve found some new veg to love. Love your strict freezer routine. I have horror stories about ice 😉

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