Skip to main content

Making a meal of it - book review

Do sometimes find yourself with a glut of something that you need to use up?  Or with a little bit of left-over something?  I was sent a book to review by Wakefield Press called "Making a Meal of it", by Jane Willcox and Rosemary Cadden, and they really have thought of a lot of ways to make meals that prevent food waste.  Its not just about veges either, they also include meat, cheese and eggs.


This is relevant to the permaculture principle I reviewed earlier in the month, produce no waste.  Food waste is a massive problem.  Not only is the food wasted, but also all the energy used to produce and transport the food.  One of the main ways we can reduce this waste is to eat locally and seasonally (more here).

This book is full of useful information, here is just a selection of the things I learnt or used from the book so far:
  • some varieties of apples keep better than others (buy/grow the good keepers such as Granny Smith)
  • avocado, eggs and lemon slices can each be frozen for longer term storage!
  • tips for making breadcrumbs from bread scraps (great for using up failed bread experiments)
  • lots of information about storing and using all types of cheese
  • how to use up both egg whites and egg yolks, lemon peel and bread crusts
  • which onions are in season when, what each variety of orange is good for and all those potato varieties
  • how to ripen tomatoes more quickly
I do think they are going to have to write a second volume, because there was no section on eggplant, which I needed to use up over summer or chillis (which we have lots of at the moment) but they do cover most common foods in this book, with as much information on choosing the right variety and storing it correctly, as there are great recipes for using up what's left over in the fridge.  I also noticed that they didn't include two of my favourite methods of storage, dehydration and fermentation, but that would fill another book again!  The tips for freezing things are very useful as I always wonder what I need to blanch first.

By coincidence, it was also World Environment Day on June 5th, with the theme being Think.Eat.Save. to prevent food waste.  See some more ideas here.

Now its your turn.... do you have a great tip for avoiding food waste? using up a glut? or the last leftover of something?
The Self Sufficient HomeAcreFrom The Farm Blog Hop monday's homestead barn hop


This post was shared on Unprocessed Fridays on Girl Meets Nourishment

Comments

  1. My tip would be to eat what you grow/have, not what you want. We usually have a fridge full of fruit and veg but husband likes toast so will buy bread instead of eating the Mandarins before they go bad. He planted the Mand tree because he prefers them over Oranges. But not over toast. lol.

    Barb.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I recently read a tip that lemons could be frozen and then grated whole into cakes or salads etc. I freeze my ginger and turmeric and grate direct from the freezer - no need to peel. Also I got a huge pumpkin gifted to me the other day and I just sliced it and roasted it - two large trays. I them removed it from the skin (easy once cooked) and froze it in 1 cup ziploc bags.

    ReplyDelete
  3. There's not much wasted here but if there's something it goes to the chickens or wormery. We don't have a huge growing space (just a back garden and allotment) so I'm not usually faced with a huge glut of any one veg - though I do bottle some of it as it trickles in.

    One of my tricks for getting the most out of the garden inexpensively is stocking up on bulk Couscous, pasta, Quinoa, and other grains and then using them as a base for whatever fresh veggies are in season.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have to say that I really can't understand how people can have so much food waste. Why buy things you know you won't have time/desire to eat. It's so easy not to have waste. Buy only what you need. Plan your meals. Buy 2 oranges instead of 5 pounds of them. I have a garden and all the vegetables we don't use I cook (jams,salsa,pickling) or freeze it. The cooking waste (potato and carrot peel ..) and leftover food we cook to our chickens or dispose it in compost and we dry leftover bread and feed birds with it.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Seeing your avoiding food waste post linked up at the Creative HomeAcre Hop was great, as it is a subject close to my heart. My tip is that you can freeze a lot more veg etc than most of us think - I buy cheap mushrooms in bulk and slice then freeze them, for example. Thanks for joining us and we hope you'll come and party creatively again on Sunday at http://mumtopia.blogspot.com/2013/06/23rdJunebloghop.html
    If you would like to write a guest post for Mumtopia, please let me know - I'm sure my readers would benefit from what you have to say.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for sharing your tips, it seems there's always something we can learn from each other! Let's hope this helps to reduce food waste even further...

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks, I appreciate all your comments, suggestions and questions, but I don't always get time to reply right away. If you need me to reply personally to a question, please leave your email address in the comment or in your profile, or email me directly on eight.acres.liz at gmail.com

Popular posts from this blog

Getting started with chickens - Tanya from Lovely Greens

Sign up for my weekly email updates here, you will find out more about soap and our farmlife, straight to your inbox, never miss a post!  New soap website and shop opening soon....

Farmer Liz: You will remember Tanya from Lovely Greens from the first series, she lives on the Isle of Mann and added chickens to her garden about a year ago.  You can leave comments for this post on Tanya's blog.



How many chickens (and other fowl) do you keep, what breed and what do you use them for (meat, eggs, slug control etc)?
Tanya: Around the same time that we were initially thinking about having hens another friend beat us to the punch. She went to the local pet store and bought a flat-pack hen house and chicken run combo and found a local farmer who had dozens of semi-feral chickens running around his property. One night he pulled three down from the trees and my friend took them home in a pet carrier. She named them Miracel, Carmen, and Geraldine and though they’re probably related they were all…

What to do with eight acres

Behind the scenes of my blog I can see the search terms that led people to find my blog.  It can be quite interesting to look through them occasionally and see what people are looking for.  Most of them involve chicken tractors, but another question that comes up regularly is “what can you do with eight acres?” or “how much land is eight acres?”.  Today I will try to answer this question.

Of course it is a very broad question, there are lots and lots of things you can do with eight acres, but I’m going to assume that you want to live there, feed your family and maybe make a little extra money.  I make that assumption because that’s what I know about, if you want to do something else with your eight acres, you will need to look somewhere else.

If you haven’t chosen your land yet, here a few things to look for.  Focus on the things you can’t change and try to choose the best property you can find in your price range.  Look for clean water in dams, bores or wells, either on the property …

Growing mushrooms in my kitchen!

I’ve been wanting to try growing mushrooms for some time. I LOVE mushrooms and we buy them from the supermarket every week, so I was keen to find a way to produce them at home to reduce waste and potentially cost as well.





A few years ago I found out that you could grow mushrooms from the spent mushroom compost from mushroom farms. So we dropped in to a farm on the Sunshine Coast and picked up a couple of boxes for $2 each. I diligently kept them dark and sprayed them with water, but in our climate, I just couldn’t keep them damp enough (and I had to keep them outside because our shed was too hot). I never managed to produce any mushrooms from those boxes, but when I gave up and tipped the compost out onto the garden, mushrooms sprang up everywhere. I wasn’t confident that they were the right mushrooms though, so I didn’t harvest any of those. As the proverb says, All mushrooms are edible, but some only once! I am generally a bit nervous about unidentified fungi.

Since then, I had…