There are a few items in my house which are always around during Ramadan. As we only have 1 – 2 meals a day it is important to store these foods correctly to help them last as long as possible!
Storing our food correctly is vital in reducing our food waste. Storage guidance on packaging can tell you the best place to store food at home. Most foods, which are not going to be used right away, can be frozen before the Use By Date. A great tip shared by a resident was freezing fresh herbs, which were wilting, in an ice cube tray with stock or oil to be used later in cooking.
Frozen and tinned goods are great to have in any household. They last much longer and are normally cheaper. Some people may be wary of tinned goods, however most of them can be just as good for you as fresh produce travelling long distances, as they are tinned shortly after being harvested (always check the ingredients for added salt/sugar).
Your Fridge is Your Friend!
Planning meals is another great way to reduce food waste, plan your meals around what you have at home. Have a look in your fridge and practice FIFO (First In First Out), keep older items in the front of the fridge so they are not forgotten.
To maximise the use of your fridge make sure to keep it at the optimum temperature. Keep your fridge below 5°C (ideally 3°C) and your freezer set to -18°C.
Illustration by Rachel Sneddon
→ Doors: This is the warmest place in the fridge, perfect for condiments and drinks.
→ Upper shelves: Most consistent temperature, good for leftovers.
→ Lower middle shelves: Perfect for dairy and dips.
→ Bottom shelves: These are the cooler shelves, especially near the back, this is best for meats (if you eat it!)
→Drawers: Helps to keep produce from drying out, so ideal for veggies and fruit.
Here are some of Farhana, our Education and Engagement Officer’s, Ramadan household staples and the best ways to store them to keep them lasting longer:
Everyone has some tips and tricks on how they store their food, below are some storage tips that have been shared:
»When storing bagged salad, place a paper towel in the packet to soak up the moisture, this helps the salad stay crisp for longer.
»Place bay leaves in your flour to prevent any pantry insects.
»To perk up old celery or carrots, cut off the stems and place in a tall glass of cold water.
»If your cheese is going mouldy, cut off the mould and grate the rest and freeze for easy grated cheese.
»If you have too many potatoes, par boil them and then freeze for later.
»When freezing leftovers make sure to put the date on the container to ensure it is not wasted.
»If you have leftover bread or milk, freeze it for a later date.
»Store an apple with your potatoes, it will stop the potatoes from sprouting.