Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen
There's a lot of waste produced in the kitchen and it can be avoided if you set up five simple steps.
Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen #1 Composting
Kitchen food scraps make great compost. Even if you live in an apartment you can still make a great compost with a little bin under your sink that will feed your indoor or balcony plants. I love the Bokashi Urban Composter City a small bucket turns scraps into valuable nutrients for the garden. it is completely airtight so won't attract flies or other pests and will not cause any unpleasant odours. I use two of these buckets, so once is 'fermenting' I still have one to add scraps to.
Here's how it works:
Place your your food scraps (cut them up first) and place them into the bucket. This compost bucket works with all types of food scraps including plant, meat, fish, citrus, dairy, coffee grounds, egg shells and even flowers that have died.
Spray Compost Accelerator onto the scraps each time they are added with the Spray Compost Accelerator (4-5 times).
Make sure you push the scraps down on the layers each time they are added and always keep the lid tightly closed.
In a few days you will be able to drain the liquid (soil conditioner) from the tap.
When the bucket is full, drain all the remaining liquid, dilute it and add to plants and garden. Dig the rest of the pulp into some soil and leave it to settle for 6-8 weeks then you can add it to the garden, lawn or pot plants.
When emptied clean only with Citrus Natural Cleaner spray as this won't harm microbes inside composter, or fresh water.
Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen #2 Recycling
Well this is a no brainer, and hopefully if you are reading this blog you automatically do that anyway, but I'm talking about not just recycling into the bin but repurposing waste. For example, plastic trays fruit such as strawberries come in, or plastic containers that might contain pre-cooked rice etc make fantastic trays to grow microgreens in. The lids of the strawberries container also make for a mini-glasshouse for your microgreens.
The same goes for egg cartons they can be used to raise seedlings. Cut the lid off and place in under the carton for support, Just place some seedling mix in the carton cups, poke a hole in the soil then place in the seed. Water with a spray mister and keep the seedlings moist. Once they sprout you can seperate the individual cups and plant them straight in the ground, the cardboard will disintegrate as the plant grows.
Alternatively, you can save the half shells from your boiled eggs, pop them into the carton cup and plant your seed in the shell. Once your seedling ready for planting, gently crush the shell and plant the seed and shell straight into the ground. Egg shells add nutrients to the soil and will break down.
Note: Keep the seedlings in a warm place inside at first then a couple of days before you are going to plant in the garden, take them outside into a shady area to acclimatise. This is a great craft for children.
Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen #3 Repurpose Jars
Jars are great for storing buttons, food, craft items and much more so rather than buy storage items from the supermarket re-use what you already have in the home. This will save money as well. If you make your own jams etc then save all your jars for your produce and ask friends to save them for you too.
Check out the amazing ideas on decorating jars from this post by Expert Home Tips.
More ideas on upcycling glass in this book, Crafting With Mason Jars and Other Glass Containers.
Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen #4 Store Food in Containers Rather Than Plastic Wrap
It's so convenient to use plastic wrap, lunch bags and tin foil to store food but when you think about it that's just more rubbish that will be created. There are plenty of alternatives such as food covers, bread bags, lunch boxes, jars etc.
Five Ways to Reduce Waste in the Kitchen #5 Grow Your Own Food
It's one of my simple pleasures in life growing my own herbs and vegetables The photo above is some Basil from my vegetable garden that I picked to make pesto. I have two vegetable gardens (raised beds), microgreens growing, herb pots and hanging pots with vegetables. There is nothing more satisfying than going outside to choose exactly what you need for the meal you are making. There's no waste and you get to eat freshly picked vegetables and herbs.
I have a mini greenhouse and I compost my scraps. If you don't have much room you can always use wall gardens, to grow your own vegetables and herbs.