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Ending Food Waste

Any Kind of Muffins

I very sadly threw out a whole stalk of celery last week. It was a completely wasted purchase. Frankly, I had forgotten about it, and it had gotten buried in the vegetable drawer under some squashes. When I found it, it wasn’t salvageable.

Do you sometimes throw out vegetables, too? Or maybe fruit? At times, I’ve bought gorgeous fruit, only to find it later, after it had grown fuzzy because I had forgotten about it. Statistics show that I am not alone (According to the EPA, in 2010, about 34 million pounds of food was thrown out in the United States!).

I’ve been trying to cut back on food waste, and regularly go through the fridge. I still may not use every fruit while it is perfect, but I have become pretty good at finding ways to use the less-than-perfect produce I sometimes find in the fridge.

When I have fruit (and even some vegetables) that’s past its prime, but not spoiled yet, I try very hard to turn them into something delicious. You know the kind: the ones that are a little wrinkled, or have a couple of bruised spots (just enough that the kids look at them and shake their heads)... Instead of letting them rot, I have begun to bake muffins! (Lots of muffins.) Just remove the bruised spots before you get started. (I even mix them up. One of my kids’ favorites was the time I mixed mashed ripe bananas with mashed ripe plum. Oddly, they insisted there was honey in those muffins!)

Any Kind of Muffin
Some other ideas for past prime produce (please, cut away any obviously not-good parts before you make these recipes):