Eating bad food in order not to waste

After reading Mrs. Green’s blog about not wasting food and her count down to September 2nd-8th Zero Waste Week, I attempted diligence all summer long.

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I’ve always done this, but after reading Mrs. Green’s count down to Zero Waste Week, I made even more of an effort. Any time I found moldy spots, I simply peeled them off. Sometimes, I peeled off a lot. The bugs got into the tomatoes, along with the slugs. I cut that part off and saved the remainder of the tomato.

I wasn’t perfect. I threw about 5 to 7 cucumbers in the compost throughout the summer as I found them juicy and rotting in containers in the back of the fridge. I always have such good intentions, but I got “cucumbered out.” I kept telling myself, I’d eat them tomorrow and then tomorrow and tomorrow again. ¬†And the tomatoes— I had them running out my ears this season. I should have canned, but lord, I never thought I’d get this many! At the end of September and beginning of October, they starting exploding off the vine. As I write this, on October 16th, I’m still cutting up tons of them, itchy juice inching toward my elbows, promising myself they’ll be in the crock pot in the next few weeks to save them from freezer burn. At least I saved the tomatoes–minus three.

Yes, three tomatoes rot on my back porch as I write this. They were pretty much eaten by the bugs but I picked them anyway, thinking I could save a portion off of each. Then I forgot, and three days later I notice they are infested with those little fruit fly thingies.

I am adamant about food waste and kick myself whenever I do this. It’s a waste of money and a waste of food. I suppose because I grew all these, I’m giving myself a little leeway, thinking at least I didn’t pay for them.

But the truth is I’m just lazy, using the baby as an excuse. “I’ve been so busy.” That’s bull. I always have time to cut up, freeze or cook with vegetables.

I’M SO MAD AT MYSELF!! I wasn’t zero waste on this one. Sure, they fed the compost, but I could have done so much better! And that compost is not a get-out-of-jail-free card. Moral of the story: if you’re going to have a garden, you’d better learn how to can, girlfriend.

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See how perfect they are under all that mold?

Inspired by Mom Photographer and her smoothies, I used a lot of these cucumbers in her cucumber/avocado/spinach smoothie¬†recipe—-which I throughly enjoyed. Thanks Ewa!!

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8 responses to “Eating bad food in order not to waste

  1. This info is a big help to a Cookonboard like me. yhanks alot for sharing… Enjoy ur smoothies!!! ;)

  2. Remember, letting something go to rot isn’t necessarily letting it go to waste. If you start saving the seeds from cukes and tomatoes, you have to let them rot. And feeding the compost is never wasteful. We use every ounce of that black gold in the spring.

  3. I have a poster in my classroom saying, “the perfect is the enemy of the good.” I wonder if it applies here- it feels like you are beating yourself up about cukes going bad, but you ARE doing real good with your efforts, especially by sharing them. Compost is good, foodbanks are good, canning is good, freezing is good, napping when your baby naps is good. No need to be perfect. I can’t get cukes to grow…I’m trying to convince myself that buying them at the farmers market is good, too.

  4. I think this is one of the benefits of having chickens- now, even though I DO watch so we don’t waste- most of the time, if we don’t eat it, they do. Lesley’s also right. Making awesome compost is never a waste. :)

  5. I gave up on feeling guilty about compost a long time ago. It doesnt go to waste in the compost – it gets used in the end.

  6. I’m not that healthy to try that smoothie combo! You’re so lucky to have a garden – at first I didn’t realise that fact, and I thought ‘why is she buying SO many cucumbers?’ Hahaha – we buy one of and two of weekly, and usually that helps make no waste. Except lettuce – we’re not really lettuce people, so if it ends up in our house, it usually dies!

  7. Wow. You all made me feel so much better, especially about the compost!
    Thank you so much for your comments!
    I’m trying to get through comments today, so far, I have one post down! :)
    Yay!

    @Susan— you’re right, I have to stop that perfection meter. It’s killing me.
    @Ewa—I LOVE that smoothie! That’s what I was trying to say!! I’m eating another one today! :)
    @Lesley—you always have a way with words. You help me see things from the other side.
    @ninoalmendra –You are so welcome. I’m thrilled something I share might be used!
    @ frostforseti79— having chickens must be awesome. That was one of the things I really wanted when we looked for a house. I need to check the regs in the neighborhood…..
    @Heidi—You always make sense. No to guilt, darn it!
    @SarahN—it is really good. The yogurt makes it creamy and the honey makes it sweet. You might like it more than you think! :)

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, everyone. YOU ALL ARE AWESOME!

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