Thursday, June 7, 2012

Thrifty Thursday

My refrigerator is bare right now but it makes me happy!  The reason is that I know it's because I've been diligent about using the things I have.  I shudder to think of the days past when I would purchase a refrigerator full of vegetables, only to have them go bad because I never used them.

I've been doing my best to use up the things I have before I go purchase more.  This week I used up the vegetables by making salads, a stir-fry, and a casserole.  I'm out of lettuce but tonight's salad will be marinated cucumbers & tomatoes.

I've also utilized my freezer more.  For example, I bought cilantro for a recipe but only needed a bit of it.  I can't tell you how many times it has spoiled because I didn't use it.  So what I've been doing instead is using my food processor to pulverize it and then freeze it.  I had a bit of olive oil to it as the processor is chopping it up.  Then I put it in ice cube trays, freeze it and then store the cubes in a freezer bag.  When I'm making a cooked dish the requires cilantro I throw in a cube of it. I've also done this with basil, parsley and other herbs as well.

I also had an excess of onions that were starting to get soft and would be unsalvageable if I kept them on the counter.  So I chopped them up and put them in a freezer bag in the freezer.  This way when there is a time that I'm out of onions, I can go to my freezer for the back-up.  Green peppers freeze well this way too.

I've been using the fruit that is starting to over-ripen in fruit salads.  Bananas that begin to turn get thrown, peel and all into the freezer to use at a later date for banana bread.  I just pull out a banana, let it thaw for a bit, peel and add to the recipe.

One way you can be thrifty is by not throwing your money in the garbage.  Use up those fresh fruits & veggies before they rot away!