My name is Julia and I’m a recovering food-waster. I’ve been reducing my food- waste for nine months.
This change in behavior was inspired by an article by Jonathan Bloom in the New York Times about wasted food. Before I had my moment of enlightenment, I had a notorious habit of food-shopping without a plan, then devising a plan for my meals which invariably involved ingredients I hadn’t yet purchased, and then shopping a second time. This amounted to a huge pile of wasted food that went into my compost bin. Good for my garden, I suppose, but not good for my wallet. And especially bad as I work towards, “reducing, reusing, and recycling.”
One key success factor in my behavior modifications was utilizing my freezer more. Whenever I had leftovers that I didn’t think I could consume within a few days, I’d pop them in a ziploc bag or Tupperware and into the freezer. But as I discovered the other night, my freezer was PACKED!
I just returned from a few days out of town. Needless to say, the refrigerator was bare. Being tired from my travels, I didn’t want to grocery shop. I knew I had things in the freezer, and after unpacking, I realized I could make a simple, complete meal including green vegetables and protein.
The answer: Fried Rice (and Quinoa) with Edamame.
The quinoa was leftover from the Black Bean Salad (yes, a few quarts of black beans still line the freezer shelves) and the edamame was from…. from…. gosh, I can’t even tell you. And carrots, ginger and garlic lay in the bottom of the refrigerator crisper drawer – still crisp.
I also found some squash puree that will be lunch tomorrow and apple sauce that will be a little snack as soon as I finish this post!
My recipe for fried rice combines the elements of Eileen Yin-Fei Lo’s recipe with a Balinese twist.
Leftover Fried Rice
1 tbs. peanut or canola oil
2 tsp. fresh minced ginger
2 tsp. minced garlic
3 cups cooked rice and/or quinoa, cooled
¼ cup shredded white cabbage or carrots
¼ cup chopped tomatoes or edamame
2 tbs. fried shallots
1 tbs. soy sauce
1 tbs. Chinese Rice Wine
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
½ tbs. oyster sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
1-2 tbs. srirachi chili sauce (depending on taste)
1. Combine ingredients for the sauce.
2. Heat skillet on high heat. Add 1-2 tbs. oil. Add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, but not browned (you may need to add more oil to the pan). Add ½ of the fried shallots, cabbage and tomatoes (or carrots and edamame). Cook for 1 minutes more. Add rice. Break up and stir fry until slightly brown and heated through. Stir in the sauce.
3. Remove rice from pan and put on a serving dish. Garnish rice with remaining fried shallots