Day 1: 10 day leftover challenge

Some of the left over food I have eaten on Monday of my 10 day challenge.

Some of the left over food I have eaten on Monday of my 10 day challenge.

Over the next 10 days I am going to be using up a lot of the left over food I have stored in my fridge and freezer.  I also want to use up a lot of the food that I have stored in my cupboards. I am a food hoarder and I have realised that I don’t need to be on.One thing that I am sure many of us are guilty of is either buying more food that we actually need, wasting cooked food or storing too many ingredients in our cupboards.

While composing my shopping list earlier this week, I was amazed and disgusted at how much I have.

Day one went well and so far so good. Creepy towards the back of my fridge was some left over chicken and some tinned peaches. If they had made it to the back of the fridge I expect that in the next day or so they would have made it to the bin. I hate throwing food away and I would have been very annoyed at myself if it had become the case.

Browsing through my cupboards I spotted three packets of quinoa. Pouring what I thought was a sensible amount into a pan with some waster and a stock cube, I found a half empty pack of paellero and wondered what it would taste like on another grain other than rice. Paellero is a Spanish saffron and herb mix.  I was hoping that it would make a tasty and interesting lunch. I then cut up the left over chicken and add it to the quinoa once cooked and cooled.

Having measured by eye it worked out that I had made enough lunch for three days. It was tasty and different – perhaps too much quinoa and not enough chicken. Tomorrow I am thinking of adding some veg to add more variety and textures. I know I have a packed of frozen veg somewhere in the depths of my freezer.

It's a great versitle ingredient that can be used up in a number of ways. Try cubing some into a tomatoe sauce for a spicy kick.

It’s a great versatile ingredient that can be used up in a number of ways. Try cubing some into a tomato sauce for a spicy kick.

For dinner I defrosted a single pot of Spanish chicken rice – I had clearly cooked too much rice and just did what I always do with left overs and that is to put into a plastic tub and into the freezer. Routing through my fridge and looking for something to add to it I found half a chorizo. I cut up half of that into chunks and put it into a frying to cook and then added the rice. The spicy paprika oil gave extra flavour to the rice and it bulked out what would have been a plate of rice for dinner – totally uninspiring.

The peaches I used earlier in the day as a snack and chopped them up and put them with some mango that I had left.

Day one was a success, but I think by the end of the week I will be making meals out of nothing. I don’t feel very challenged at the moment. But I am looking forward to what the next few days will bring, and I am wondering what to do with six tins of baked beans…

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About samanthapidoux

Double Edward R Murrow award winner for 'Best Documentary' and 'Best Feature'. Community and freelance journalist and programme maker. Currently working at the Lincoln School of Journalism at the University of Lincoln.

Posted on September 24, 2013, in Food. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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