Households across the county are looking to find new ways to save money wherever possible.
As the cost of living soars, tips for cutting expenses are on the rise, including switching mobile network providers and reducing your energy consumption. When it comes to weekly grocery shopping, preventing food waste can help you save money.
Wasting food is easy to do, even those who spend hours preparing food can end up with wasted bread at the end of the week. Whether you forgot your leftovers in the fridge or bought too many fruits and vegetables, making the most of what you have left can help, Manchester Evening News reports.
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Personal finance expert at CashLady.com, Paul Wilson, shared his top tips on things you could do with your leftovers to save money. If you always seem to throw away the end of your bread or find yourself pouring leftover red wine down the sink, here are six ways to avoid waste.
Use the ends of your bread to make breadcrumbs
People often avoid eating the ends of their bread and they end up being thrown in the trash. But the fate of a loaf’s end is in your hands and it has great potential. Crushing them into breadcrumbs before you throw them away means they can be used for another dish later, like homemade fish and chips.
Breadcrumbs can also be mixed with garlic, butter and cheese to drizzle a mac and cheese leaving it with a crunchy texture, Manchester Evening News said. Most kids also prefer their lunchtime sandwich without the crusts, so instead of cutting them out of the scraps, use them for your breadcrumb mixture.
Making the most of your leftovers is pretty easy when it comes to vegetables. Any alternate vegetables can be seasoned and blended into a creamy soup.
Vegetables are versatile and can be added to almost any dish. You can start including vegetables in your regular pasta tea, in an omelet, or even on your pizza. This gives it a good taste and you avoid food waste.
Prepare potatoes to create a meal for breakfast or lunch
Potatoes are one of the most common foods to make the leftover list. If you have leftover boiled potatoes, you can easily find a recipe for hash browns, hash browns, or potato salad to take them even further.
Potato pancakes are easy to make if you have about half a pound of peeled potatoes. Simply mash them in a bowl and add two ounces of flour, one ounce of butter, and a pinch of salt. Then spread out on a floured work surface, cut the potato pancakes using a mold and brown them for four to five minutes on each side.
Transform your leftover meat
Using your leftover meat doesn’t have to be boring. There are endless amounts of inexpensive meals you can make without having to stock up on extra food at the store.
When reheating the meat, it is important to ensure that it is very hot, but it can then be used to make a curry or a stir-fry, for example. If you feel you don’t have enough meat to cover the curry, you can fill it with potatoes.
Likewise, you can always add beans and chickpeas to your stir-fry if you’re worried about the amount of meat.
Get creative with your fruit
It’s really easy to buy too much fruit, especially if you’re shopping in the midst of a sudden health hit. But realistically, a large amount of fruit won’t be eaten until it becomes inedible. Luckily, there are fun ways to prevent it from going to waste.
First, you can infuse the fruit with water and make your own popsicles. Alternatively, you can use the leftover to make a fruit salad or mix it with yogurt for a delicious smoothie. Some leftover pieces can also be used as a garnish.
A fruit sorbet is also surprisingly easy to make. All you will need is two pounds of fruit, lemon juice, a cup of sugar, and water. For a heartier dessert, you can make apple crumble, blackberry pie, or banana bread.
Another option to consider is making your own jam by boiling your fruit. If you seal the jam, it will last up to a year in a cool, dark place and makes a nice thoughtful gift.
Don’t forget to use up your leftover drinks
It’s not just the food you can get the most out of. If you end up with leftover red wine, why pour it down the sink when it could enhance a stew or Bolognese? Red wine also pairs well with poached pears for a tasty yet simple dessert.
If you have leftover white wine instead, this can be used for dishes like cod or dipped into risotto or paella for that extra flavor.
If you want to get a little more creative, you can make vinegar out of your leftover wine. Simply pour into a bowl, add the starter vinegar, stir vigorously and cover. Let it sit at room temperature and stir it daily. After about 3 weeks it will start to taste like vinegar where you will then need to transfer it to an airtight bottle.