When times are tough you need to save those pennies, and let’s face it who doesn’t these days? It’s sometimes hard to find inspiration to create cheap, nutritious, delicious and appealing meals that the whole family will eat and on top of that trying not to waste anything and throw away food unnecessarily. As a mother of two under-fives who has recently become a full time SAHM I find myself in this predicament.
This is where the lovely people at Changeworks come in, they are an Edinburgh based environmental charity and the brains behind the helpful Kitchen Canny kit. Did you know that “wasting food costs the average UK family with children £550 a year, or £45 a month*” (*Waste & Resources Action Programme 2009) . Now that is a serious amount of money to spend on something useful!
Bearing this in mind I had a kit delivered to me and decided to take up the challenge. This handy kit contains: some step-by-step cards to guide you through the process, a shopping and meal planner to stick on your fridge, some canny bags to compare your waste before and after the challenge, a canny sticker so you can celebrate your achievement in reducing waste, and a kit registration number so you can stay in touch with Kitchen Canny and fellow members on Facebook and Twitter.
I did think that I was fairly canny in the kitchen already, but after a few days of putting unused food into one of the special strong canny bags it proved I was indeed still wasting food. I know my weakness lies in preparing too much food so that we have leftovers and often can’t face eating the same thing again and again. So Kitchen Canny is great for actually making you think twice about what you do and how to make a change for the better and as the mantra goes all you need to do is:
- Buy what you need
- Cook what you need
- Buy and cook seasonal foods
- Use leftovers
So to turn over a new leaf, I will use the shopping and meal planner to help me buy and cook fewer portions, make a point of writing a shopping list and sticking to it! The step-by-step cards are full of common sense hints and tips that make you wonder why you haven’t done things before, like:
Reviving limp salad leaves by soaking them in cold water, biscuits/crackers that have gone soft can be crisped up by putting them in a warm oven for a few minutes- clever eh?!
Shouldn’t we all try to be more savvy shoppers and then canny in the kitchen, just think of the money you’ll save and how much kinder to the environment it would be?
For more information and to buy a kit for £10 plus £2.59 P&P go to http//:www.kitchencanny.co.uk