The supermarket shelves might be a little low on your usual treats and your favourite restaurants and takeaways might be closed, meaning you’re having to rely on your cooking skills and knowledge a little bit more than usual! But don’t worry, we’re here to help. Here’s our short guide on how to make your food go further.
Make use of your freezer
You’ve done your meal plan for the week, been to the supermarket and done a big shop and then you get home to realise that some of the use by dates on fresh items aren’t very long at all. This is where your freezer can come in handy. Sort the items that are going out of date before you planned to eat them and pop them in the freezer, so that as much of your food as possible remains edible for a lot longer. And when you’re ready to eat the items, just make sure you take them out of the freezer in advance and defrost the food safely. Also make sure to do a bit of research so that you know what can be frozen, you’re sure to be surprised. Everything from milk to fruit and meat and bread, – even herbs can be frozen!
Do a cupboard inventory
Now doesn’t that sound like an exciting job! How can you make your food go further if you don’t know what’s lurking at the back of your cupboard? Go through all of your cupboards and write a list of all the items in there, along with anything you might have in your freezer or fridge and try to make meals with items you already have in your house. Not only will this save you some money, it might even mean you don’t need to go out to the shops this week.
Check your expiry dates
Whilst doing your cupboard inventory, it’s a good idea to check the use by dates on all of your items and order them in a way so that the items with the closest expiry dates are nearer the front. Make meals with those items first to avoid having to let things go to waste.
Has anyone ever boiled the right amount of pasta? When you are trying to make your food go a little bit further, it’s important to get the portion sizes right. It’s usually quite easy to work this out by looking on the packaging for a recommended serving size per person or if you are using a recipe, make sure to get your weighing scales out to get it spot on.
It’s time to get creative with your cooking, if you’ve got some items that are about to go out of date and need eating up, have a go at making a dish out of them or research some recipes to see if you can find one with those ingredients. You can also challenge yourself to try and reduce your waste, by finding a new use for things. Stale bread for example, can easily be blitzed into breadcrumbs and used to make fish cakes or chicken kievs.