We’ve all faced situations that forced us to end the shelf life of our food prematurely because it’s “gone bad” or appeared to be inedible. When we live in a time of abundance and overconsumption, it’s easy to overlook both the environmental and economic impacts that food waste may contribute to.
The Food and Agriculture Organization stated that one-third of the food produced for human consumption is being lost or wasted. Dutch consumers throw away about € 2.5 billion worth of food annually, and producers about another € 2 billion, all of which can add up to more than € 150 per person. It’s evident to say that food waste has become a growing concern worldwide.
Taste Before You Waste (TBYW), a well-known Amsterdam-based organization, works to combat against this issue through free food markets, weekly dinners, and food-saving workshops. The produce that gets rescued from local supermarkets also makes its way back to the Amsterdam University College Dorms, where students can conveniently find free food as they return from their afternoon classes.
Their weekly dinners feature delicious recipes replicable for any college student. Take from the free food market, or your own pantry to make the ultimate waste-less dinner – it will be like doubling everything you had but only paying once for it. To help you out, here are some recipe ideas from TBYW that you can use to call yourself a food-saving hero.
Use up stale bread for this refreshing summer salad perfect for your brunchin’ and lunchin’. Find out how to make it here.
2. French Toast
Fun Fact: French Toast is traditionally known as “Pain Perdu”, which literally translates to “Lost Bread”. Find the recipe here.
3. Bread Balls
All you need is some stale bread (croissants also work really well), rip it into pieces, throw it into a bowl with milk and voila – you’ve got yourself a dough ready to be shaped. Like it sweet? Add raisins and a bit of sugar. Like it savoury? Add some salt, oregano, rosemary, spices, and even cheese if you’re feeling it. Bring them to your next potluck dinner for a simple appetizer that will be sure to impress.
Jam isn’t traditionally made with chia seeds, but use these little guys instead of sugar and you’ll be racking up the health points. Top this off on your french toast and you’ve got yourself the ultimate waste-free breakfast.
Just as the recipe indicates, you can use any leftover vegetables you have. Change your sandwich game forever by using these as toppings.
Soup is great because you can make it out of absolutely anything, and it works all year round. This recipe shows you how to make a delicious and healthy cauliflower curry soup. Additionally, you can check out the TBYW Blog for other soup variations (2015 > April > You Say Tomato, I Say Tomato).
#SpoonTip: Learn how to make your own vegetable stock from scraps here.
The great thing about this recipe is that you can adapt it based on what you have and what you want. Leftover vegetables + eggs = ultimate breakfast.
Once again, when you’re left with a load of veggies the best thing to do is throw them into a bowl and mash, juice, or blend. Learn how to make this delicious hummus here.
Upgrade your basic roasted vegetables with this sweet n’ spicy marinade that will be sure to leave you with a punch of flavour. Don’t be afraid to test it out with other produce you managed to save, because who doesn’t want honey-sriracha coated veggies?
Ever since I discovered the 2-ingredient banana pancakes I’ve never gone back. They are definitely some of the tastiest I’ve had and are perfect for a lazy weekend brunch or a busy Monday morning.
11. Poached Fruit
Get ready to feel totally fancy when you serve this at your next brunch.
Step up your banana bread or muffin game by turning them into doughnuts. Learn how to transform those over ripe ‘nanas here.
You will need something to cool you off from all that baking. Refresh yourself with this recipe here.
After coffee, tea is another one of those sacred must-have study drinks. It’s got your back no matter what mood you’re in. Tisane is a type of herbal tea that’s made from steeping herbs, spices, or flowers in boiling water. Well now you can use apple peels to make your own apple honey tea. Add some cinnamon sticks into the mix for the ultimate flavour.
Bring these out as your next study/road-trip/midnight snack and put all bagged-chips to shame. Learn how to make them here.