Food Waste Friday | I almost used the whole bunch…

Every week, I post a picture of the food that has gone bad over the last seven days. Why do I do this? Because in March of 2008, I finally got fed up with the amount of food I was wasting, and I thought that showing my waste to other people would motivate me to use up my food instead of wasting it. Because this often embarrassing practice was so helpful for me, I invited other bloggers to join me in posting their food waste photos, and Food Waste Friday was born.

The last little bit of cilantro got wilty on me, though.

And a lone piece of leftover fish sat in the fridge for too long. Fish is hard to eat leftover, it seems. I do try to cook just what we’ll eat in one meal, but you know, when you’re feeding six people, it’s a little tricky to predict exactly how much to make.

Let’s see…I also found a bad tomato and a rotten potato, but the rotten potato smelled so bad, it took a “Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.” sort of trip to the compost bin.

So, there’s no photo.

Rotten potatoes seriously have to be one of the stinkiest foods around.

The rotten potato has a few wrinkly friends, so I need to get on the stick and use those up. Heaven knows I don’t want another rotten potato in my kitchen!

The happy news for this week is that everything except the fish can be composted. I’m never thrilled about food waste, but when it can be turned into dirt, that’s a little relieving.

How did you do this week? If you blogged about your food waste, link us up by entering your info into the widget below. You’ll save money, reduce your trash output, and get a little publicity for your blog! And if you don’t blog, you can still share about your food waste by leaving a comment.

Those of you who participate in Food Waste Friday can now grab a fancy-schmancy button to perk up your posts. If you copy and paste the following code into your Food Waste Friday post, this little graphic will appear.


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Joshua’s 365 post: Digital


  1. says

    I think you’re right. A rotten potato is one of the stinkiest foods around. I got potatoes on sale recently and I got more than I usually buy so I’m going to have to be aggressive about using them up. If I don’t, my kitchen will start to smell like yours did. On a good note, I had no waste this week.

  2. says

    I had my first experience of a rotten potato a few weeks back, and I thought it smelt of rotting fish – really bizarre!
    Anyhow… I can declare… no waste – hurrah! At last. My fridge has Christmas puds, salt dough and some broccoli and stilton soup. So I’ve shared all that today. I’ve also shared a cufflink giveaway. Not edible… but tenuously linked to Christmas (kinda?) – the salt dough also not edible – might I add! Although the hubby eyeing it up did ask innocently what I was doing with the remnants of the cut-outs last night – to which I replied ‘not eating it….’

  3. says

    I almost had a zero waste week but unfortunately there was the last little bit of leftover curry in the fridge :( I hate rotten potatoes too, although at the moment we eat them faster than I buy them, probably because I’m gluten free.

    • Liz says

      I make fresh salsa using 2-3 good tomatoes, about half that amount in volume of minced garlic and onion (or shallots), an avocado, and a entire bunch each of parsley and cilantro. Squeeze the juice of a lime in, shazam! If you use the entire bunch of cilantro all at once, there’s no waste. :D

  4. says

    My food waste this week was entirely preventable … which is the worst :-(
    Broccoli, green beans and a bell pepper all had to go – we were all under the weather, and became a tea and toast family for a couple of days.
    But at least it was homemade bread for the toast and lovely English tea – not so bad!

  5. says

    Actually, I do compost plain fish, if it’s spoiled. Many Indians dating back to Colonial times intentionally “planted” fish alongside their crops as fertilizer.

    Agree that leftover fish can be a challenge to use up. Salmon? make a quiche/impossible pie. Plain white fish can easily be slipped into a fish chowder.


  6. says

    I threw out some old cheese sauce but feel that I balanced that out with the creative use of leftover frozen mushroom risotto. It became the crust for pizza.

  7. Jen says

    Only a cup of leftover Moroccan chicken soup hit the trash. Made it for my book club dinner and DH and I ate the leftovers for several meals, but the last bit in the container was one cup too much.
    I did finish an entire giant container of psinach by offering to being salad to a potluck and then dumping the leftover slald (spinach, carrots, bell pepper, tomatoes) into a curry. Leftover salad never gets eaten in our house so I’m happy with this save.
    I do have a lot of potatoes and some parsley that need to be used. I foresee a large pot of soup this weekend!

  8. Suzanne says

    My mom used to take her freezer burned meat and plant them under her fruit trees. She had amazing fruit on those trees. I agree with the commenter who mentioned that fish is good compost material. My mom simply cut out that middle process and planted it into the ground under her trees directly. I guess this way it made having this waste not so bad because her garden was incredible, and she did love her garden. :)

  9. Liz says

    For a potato recipe, I really liked my “poor man’s pot” this week: 2 large potatoes, diced; about 1 cup of dried split peas, washed; about 1/5 of a head of cabbage, ribboned; and 2 carrots, chopped. Add all to 2 cups of vegetable stock and simmer until the peas are done. Salt and pepper to taste, with extra red pepper for serving. Ate it with rolls “buttered” with chipotle mayonnaise… Yum!

  10. Michelle says

    Here’s how we use up our leftover fish: chop up the fillets and sautee with a little butter (and mexican-style spices if you want) and make fish tacos. Tortillas, cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, avocado – yum!

  11. says

    Ok, I have the exact same problem with fish down to trying to judge how much 6 people will eat. I tried to use the leftovers in a crab patty type of recipe, but it really is a tough food to eat as a leftover.

    • WilliamB says

      Practically impossible, I’d say, which is why I almost never cook it at home. The other reason is that I don’t like most cooked fish. Sushi, on the other hand…

  12. says

    I only just joined in on Food Waste Friday and saved a lot of food that would have normally ended up in the trash anticipating my impending Friday confessions.. Such a great idea to reduce waste!

  13. Wanda says

    It’s been a long time since I posted my waste. This week it included oranges, bad beef from whole foods and some pudding I messed up when I made it.

  14. Elizabeth says

    We’ve been working on food waste. My husband takes leftovers to work so there’s always an extra adult sized portion factored in. Our big thing was fruit going bad. Now instead of buying a selection of fruit each week, I only buy 1 or 2 kinds at a time and buy something different next time. this week we actually had no waste. I made a capon and fixin’s in Monday. Tuesday was something similar to shepards pie with a mix of ground meat, shredded capon, all te leftover veggies and extra potatoes. I made stock with the carcass and veggie ends I’d been saving for several days. There was also a very nice chicken salad with cranberry mayo…learning to be resourceful.

  15. Vicki Groves says

    Food waste here: a small container of mashed potatoes that got lost in the back of the fridge…and half a beet.

    My favorite way to use leftover fish – make up some macaroni and cheese to mix it into, or drop it in a casserole.

  16. says

    As usual NO food waste – chickens eat EVERYTHING! (I have to be careful that I don’t fall over in their run!) How boring is no food waste?
    How about this as a frugal idea though?
    As you are Frugal you doubtless use bar soap which is a lot cheaper than the soft soap, if not as convenient. I make my own soft soap. You know the little pieces of soap when they get so small that you don’t want to throw them but they are pretty much useless? Well I put them all into a little plastic cup, add water, mash with a fork – after leaving for a day or two to soften. Presto soft soap! And you haven’t wasted those little bits!
    Even better, I used to be a Chimney Sweep, so as you can imagine I always had dirty hands, no amount of washing would get them clean but I noticed that when we went to the beach and I played in the sand with my daughter by the end of the first day my hands were clean and soft as – – well you know.
    So I added playsand to my home made soft soap, and now I have the cleanest, softest hands of any Chimney Sweep that I know.
    So guys, if you are into any kind of dirty work, or even if you just work on servicing the lawnmower or changing your car’s oil at weekends this is ideal. Keep the cup of soft soap and sand mixture in the workshop and get your hands cleaner than they have ever been. Your partner will be pleased. I use a 50/50 mix of soap and sand. You could probably use even more sand if you want, after all the sand on the beach is 100% sand and that worked! But If you add some soap it works very well and very quickly.

  17. Roberta says

    I acutally make leftover fish on purpooose for my husband’s lunch. I fix salad with greens and whatever else is lying around, and add the flaked fish on top. I pack dressing separately.

    Martha has a recipe for salad Niquoise (sp?) that I use as a base/inspiration.

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