Leftovers

So today’s sustainability challenge is to reduce food waste by e.g. buying smaller amounts of short-life items, and freezing leftovers. Before Covid I often found myself going to the supermarket daily, on the basis that it required too much mental energy to plan more than one dinner ahead. Then they put up signs saying we should shop as infrequently as possible and I pulled myself together and went back to making lists and shopping for as many as five days at a time. (My husband and I would also alternate going, to make it less obvious we were back again. This wasn’t a terribly successful ploy since we are such faithful customers that some of the staff greet us by name, but anyway…). We don’t often find ourselves throwing away food that has spoiled before we get to it, but the idea on the forum of freezing vegetables etc that are about to spoil is a good one.

It depends of course on careful labelling. For most of the last few years there have been three of us at home, and three is a difficult number to cook for, so every meal we would have leftovers. These I would diligently freeze, confident in my belief that I would be able to recognize what was in the various tubs when it came time to retrieve a selection for a leftovers night. When it came to it, I couldn’t always identify the contents of the tubs, and we had some interesting meals. More recently we have been eating leftovers the next day for lunch – when memories are fresh and the leftovers readily identifiable. However, last week I decided to have a leftovers night and moved a couple of (unlabelled) tubs from the freezer to the fridge, only to discover my son eating for his lunch what he described as ‘some beef thing’, but which I had correctly identified as lamb tagine.

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