November 10, 2014

Reader Question: How do I keep the food in my refrigerator from turning into science projects?

Recently, two readers asked how to manage food in the refrigerator and freezer. Both of them frequently have food going bad in the refrigerator and one has no idea what is in the freezer. They both waste money by buying what they already have and throwing out spoiled food.
I suggest three simple changes:
·  Make a list of what’s in your freezer and post it on the front of your fridge
·  Eat what’s in your fridge before you cook again
·  Shop with a list
Both women feel that they have to prepare a meal for their families every night and they often have leftovers. In that case I suggest making smaller quantities, taking leftovers for lunch or having a “smorgasbord” night where you serve the previous nights’ leftovers.
I use clear plastic containers for leftovers and keep them in one section of the fridge, close to the front, so that I know what needs to be eaten shortly. This prevents the mysterious, overwhelming odor and Technicolor display created by rotten food.
If you still have a jam-packed refrigerator, choose one day a week when you’ll take out all the food and make a decision about eating it or tossing it. When you realize how much food is going in the trash, you may be more inclined to change your habits.
Photo by Keerati
November is Clean Out Your Refrigerator Month, which makes preparing for Thanksgiving a little easier. Start by throwing out old condiments that no one likes and consolidating containers of the same ingredients. Before you buy another bottle of salad dressing, consider how many you already have open in your refrigerator.
What is the strangest thing you’ve found in your refrigerator or freezer?
 Organized by Marcie TM: Save time and money by letting go of what you don't need and finding room for what you value
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