Each year in the UK, we throw out roughly 20% of the food we buy, which according to the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, this means that the average family wastes a whopping £60 per month. Most of this is also food that we could have used.
We’ve all got cupboards brimming with condiments, cans and dried goods, along with fridges full of fresh vegetables, dairy products and meat, but all too often we stare blankly at them and wonder how to make a meal.
However with websites such as Supercook and apps available to download to android and IOS devices, like CookBrite and AllRecipes, planning our mealtimes, using the ingredients we already have in, just got a whole lot simpler.
All you need to do is list the foods you already have and voila; your recipe ideas will appear!
Before you know it, you’ll have cooked up a meal for free, or almost nothing if you’ve had to purchase a few extras – a meal that most likely would have ended up in the bin, beforehand.
If, whilst having a spring clean, you come across cans and packet goods that are still unopened and in date, but you know you won’t use, why not donate them to your local foodbank? The Trussell Trust relies on the kind donations of items such as; cereal, tinned soup, pasta, rice, pasta sauce, beans, tinned meat, tinned vegetables, tea/coffee, sugar and biscuits to help them put together their three-day emergency packs, which last year benefitted over one million people in crisis.
Our nearest foodbanks can be found by visiting: www.trusselltrust.org/get-help/find-a-foodbank.[/one_half][one_half_last] [box type=”shadow” align=”alignright” class=”” width=”300″]
What To Throw Out And When
Once opened, use within six months. Flour can go rancid and even become infested by insects, so it’s best to keep it in an airtight container and buy fresh bi-annually to save any hidden surprises finding their way inside your homemade cakes or bread!
There is no known danger consuming these after a year, but to keep dishes and gravies full of flavour, stock cubes are best to use up within twelve months.
Just like stock cubes, dried herbs can’t cause any harm eating them after twelve months, however, the flavours can diminish and ultimately affect how bland our meals taste, after this time!
This may surprise many of us; but honey, once opened, should be stored in the fridge and used within six weeks. This is because crumbs (from toast) can end up in the honey and it can cause mould to grow, which will affect the honey’s flavour and could give the consumer an upset stomach. Unopened jars can be kept for years!
Once a packet is opened, tea bags should be used within three months to keep the taste of our favourite cuppa fresh. Over time, its smell and taste will diminish. If kept in unopened packets, use up the tea bags within a year. [/box] [/one_half_last]