Leftover Herb Salsa Verde

Herb Salsa Verde is a green sauce, which you can make as chunky or smooth as you wish. It’s a great way to use up any leftover herbs or greens in the fridge and can accompany any meat or fish dish.

The recipe can be adapted by using any herbs depending on your own taste or what you are serving it with. There is no exact recipe, you can add as little or as much of each ingredient as you like, but you need to add enough olive oil to make it a sauce. You can also use a number of wild herbs such as wild garlic or sorrel.

Ingredients:

  • Handful of herbs
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Lemon juice / red wine vinegar
  • Olive oil, as needed
  • Optional: chopped capers, mustard or gherkins

Method:

Chop the herbs finely and put in a medium bowl.

Add each ingredient and stir in, tasting as you go.

Add olive oil and stir thoroughly to create a sauce-like texture.

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The recipe above comes from “Leftover Pie: 101 ways to reduce your food waste” a book by Anna Pitt and it was contributed by Sara Green, Derby Food Assembly.

“Leftover Pie” teaches people about the importance of food waste reduction and gives practical ideas and solutions to this major world problem. Tracing the history of food waste over the last 100 years, the book looks at how we have arrived at a food waste crisis point. Then, without beating ourselves up about it, Leftover Pie shares tips and recipes to help us tackle the problem and make the most of what we have.

For this moment you can purchase this book in kindle version only but the paperback is on its way.

Currently, Anna is running a special offer where you can pre-order a signed copy of the book for £10 only (regular price for the paperback is set for £12.99) – the author will make sure, the book arrives on the launch date of September 8th. But hurry as this offer ends very soon.

Do you have any “secret” recipes to use leftover food in your kitchen?

My Top 3 Food Related Money Saving Tips

My Top 3 Food Related Money Saving TipsA few days ago I came across the “101 ways to save money” article from The Money Advice Service. Great read and a lot of wonderful tips worth putting into action. So in the saving spirit I have decided to put together my top 3 food related money savings tips.

1. Know what you need to buy now and in the nearest future

I know a lot of people think that shopping with a shopping list is a great way of saving money… well I don’t agree with this philosophy. I shop the other way around – I buy what’s on special offer and then plan meals around what I have. This way I am able to spend less because I hardly ever pay the RRP and always try to buy products on special offer, or BOGOF or 2 for £X. This is a great method if you know what you have in your cupboards, what you need now and what you will need in the nearest future. Let’s take instant coffee as an example. We drink coffee every day and it is a must have in my household. When I see it on special offer and I like the price I will buy 2 or 4 jars at the time – yes I might have to spend more money shopping this time round but I will never have to pay full price for my jars of coffee 🙂

2. Learn to make your own

Making your own food is the easiest way of saving money when it comes to food. Cooking from scratch might be time consuming but it will always be cheaper than buying ready-made products and you know exactly what you eating. And I am not only talking about dinners or lunches, mix some natural yogurt with condensed milk and a punnet of fruits and you got yourself ice-cream. Have some meat bones? Add some carrot and celery and boil it for few hours creating homemade stock. And who knows after a while you might even start to enjoy it, I did.

3. Work with leftovers

Food waste is a huge problem; we buy too much, we cook too much and of course we throw away way too much food. Learning how to deal with your leftover in an efficient manner can seriously improve your money pool. In most cases leftovers can be re-used and turned into something else but this means you have to get your hands dirty and actually spend some time in the kitchen 😉 Got some old bread which isn’t so fresh and sexy anymore? Well turn it into a bread pudding; this quick and virtually fool proof task will allow you to “save” the old bread and save you money as you don’t have to buying a pudding… you just made some from something which would most likely have ended up in the bin or in your back garden feeding the birds.

If you want to know more about my top tips on how to reduce food waste you can read my post here.

What are your top money saving tips when it comes to food / shopping / cooking?

*Post written in collaboration with The Money Advice Service

7 Top Tips How to Reduce Food Waste

7 Top Tips How to Reduce Food Waste at Home

Apparently an average European citizen wastes 179kg of food a year. We throw out almost 20% of the food we buy. This is a horrendous waste!

The food waste is not only limited to our households. Supermarkets and restaurants waste an even higher percentage of food, but there isn’t a lot we can do about it… We can however take a look at our “wasting” routine and try to do something about it.

We are not the most innocent family when it comes to reducing food waste, this is why I did some thinking and put a plan in place to help us reduce our food waste.

Know what you already have

This might sounds funny but do you really know what you have in your cupboards? I thought I did but I was wrong. I tend to “stock up” on things when they are on a special offer and at times I simply forget about them later on. Like the time I bought four large jars of mayonnaise despite still having two in my pantry (luckily they were still in date so nothing was wasted, we just had a lot of salads that month).
Anyway knowing what you already have in the cupboard is the key to success. It will allow you to avoid double buying but also it will help you to plan meals ahead.

Buy local, buy smart

Large superstore are designed to make us spend more; make us buy stuff we don’t really need; make us buy too much. Buying local will help us to buy only what we need and when we need it.
Going shopping with a shopping list is a great way of sticking to what we need to buy, if we can stick to our pre-written shopping list of course.

Learn to read labels

Not all food that has passed its “label date” is actually out of date. A lot of foods have labels which are actually design as recommendations for the store selling them.
Sell-by date – a date printed on the packaging of perishable goods, indicating the date after which the goods should not be offered for sale. This doesn’t mean they can’t be eaten. Sell-by date can be found for example on fresh cakes or pastries. Store can’t sell them past the date but we can still enjoy them 🙂
Best before – the length of time a packaged food will last without deteriorating. Food eaten after “best before” date is perfectly safe to eat, it might just not be “perfectly perfect”; its taste, texture, aroma or appearance might start to change slightly.
Use-by date – refers to safety and are the required form of date mark for foods considered to be highly perishable from a microbiological point of view. This is the only label we should be really concern about and should try to avoid products which have passed their use-by date.

Learn how to store food properly

A lot of food goes to waste due to poor storage. Investing in a good, clever storage solution will help us save money (and a lot of food) in the long run. A nice set of plastic air-tight containers (like the ones I reviewed for you in the past from Addis) or simple Fresha bags, which are design to keep your food fresh for up to 25% longer are perfect food storage solutions. They will help your food stay fresh for longer, giving you more time to enjoy it.
Storage containers are just one side to the proper storage solution… the other is correct fridge placement. When unpacking new grocery shopping, move your “old” food to the front of the fridge. This way you will not forget about that pack of half eaten butter or an already opened bottle of milk.

Learn to experiment in the kitchen

I must agree that recipes are made to be followed but I am also a believer in variety and freedom. Product substitution might not be ideal every time but you never know what your new “upgraded” dish will taste like until you try it. Experimenting in the kitchen is a great way of “using” all the odd things we have left. Challenge yourself and cook once a week a “what’s left in my fridge” dinner. You might be surprised with the results. To give you an idea on what sort of thing we create, check my “Something from Nothing Dinner” post.

Learn to use leftovers

Big portion of the food ending up in the bin come from leftovers… Depending on the type of leftovers, they can be eaten the next day, turned into a new meal or frozen, to be consumed at a later date. Very often you can find the dish gets better with time, so don’t be scared of a “leftovers” dinner.
Freezing it on the day is a great way of avoiding binning it a few days later. Just remember to clearly label your meals, so you know exactly what’s inside and what date you put it there.

Donate it, jar it or compost it

No matter how careful we will be, there will always be a time when we have too much food on our hands. Depending on the type of food we can donate it to a local food bank or try your hand at a new skill and re-make it for future use in the months to come, for example turning fruit and veggies into pickles and chutneys.
Last summer when we went to Poland we drove back to the UK with three cases of fresh apples. We knew that we will not be able to eat them all, so I turned some into jars of grated apples, ready to become a filling in my Apple Pie.
And when we have food which still needs to go to the bin, compost it. Instead of putting it to the bin, give it a second life and turn it into a useful resource… your garden will be truly thankful for it 😉

Anything you would add into my list?

*Picture source