Avoid Wasting Food and Save One Hundred Dollars a Month!

We can compost. We can make a freezer inventory. We can force everyone in the family to become members of the “clean plate club.” (This should go over well with a six-month-old.) I read somewhere that 25% of the food we buy ends up getting tossed. If the average three-person family (two adults and a toddler) spends just over $400 on the U.S.D.A.’s “thrifty plan,” that means they’re tossing one hundred dollars’ worth of food away each month!

So how else can we avoid wasting food? Here are some ideas:

Use portion control. If you make your own baby food, freeze it in small portions and dole it out slowly.

(more…)

Saving Organic Milk From Going Bad: Re-Pasteurizing 101

At five to six bucks a gallon, it can be heart breaking to toss a gallon of sour milk down the drain.  After today’s post, you won’t ever need to do it again!  

When your milk begins to approach its due date, simply pour it into a microwavable container or a stovetop saucepan and heat it until it barely boils.  You’ll re-pasteurize the milk by killing the bacteria that would cause it to go bad.  It may strike a few of you as rather icky, but the truth is that when you finish it will last for another week or two.  
(more…)

Finding Free Organic Produce

Blackberries ripen in the August sun, cherries plop onto neighbors’ lawns, and squash crops overwhelm backyard gardeners.  There is nothing I love more than taking advantage of summer’s opportunities for hand-picked fruit—especially when it’s free, organic, and grown locally. 

Here are my favorite food finding tips:

Wild berries: Blackberries seem to be a national favorite but huckleberries, salmon berries, and thimbleberries are just a few of the other choices available here in Oregon. I usually call our city maintenance department to check about which areas are being sprayed, ask about berry hot spots, and end up picking loads of free organic berries! I slather my clan up with sunscreen and scramble out the door in the morning hours before the sun zaps our enthusiasm.  Then we freeze the berries or make them into jam to last through the winter months.

(more…)