Don’t be tempted by Special Offers: how to tackle food waste!

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Reducing Food Waste



If you get plastic bags, save them and use them for future shopping!

According to Friends of the Earth, everyone in England and Wales throws away rubbish weighing 7 times his or her body-weight per annum! The kitchen accounts for around 20 per cent of that figure. But we can all cut our contribution to the rubbish-hill or mountain by as much as 75 per cent says Richard Ehrlich in his The Green Kitchen.


The major area of waste is the food we throw away. Total food waste accounts for around one third of household waste. In the UK, in 2007, a third of the food bought every year was thrown away! It weighed 6.7 million tonnes. It cost 9 billion pounds! Eliminating the waste would be the equivalent of taking 1 in 5 cars off the road.


In India we waste much more food in ridiculous, foolish weddings, where everyone tries to make shinier, more gaudy, more costly wedding foods, jewellery, ornaments, and ghastly decorations. Most horrible and horrifying is the food wastage.


The Green Kitchen suggests small ways to reduce this mountain of waste: shop daily, and ideally for no more than 2 days of eating, so you can keep count.

Check your fridge and larder before you go on a shopping trip. This is to find out what you don’t need!


We tend to buy certain favourite foods he says, admitting that his weakness is lemons! Mine is spinach! Or any greens for that matter!

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Don’t be tempted by special offers on food you don’t have a plan for! They are not cheap if you are not going to use them! When we pick up huge bags of potatoes or onions or whatever is on sale, we are almost certainly going to waste them!


Try to shop in small places! Avoid temptation and make a detailed list of what you need and carry it with you to the shops!


Lessons from a butter coloured cat!

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I sat still inside the house

One day, on the chaste grey

Cane sofa, as the quiet slowly

Dislodged the dimwit desire

To run to the Embroidery Empire

Which had shouted “big sale’’ to

Buy a postbox red lace dress that

Would certainly be the wrong one


For me, and then I calmed the

Hankering for another too soon

Visit to the nursery where I had

Recently ransacked the lemon grass

For the cats who had swooned over it

Instead I settled down inside the stillness


And let the emptiness of too many things

Whine inside my soul till it too gave in to

The solemn cold clarity of nothingness

& I crept inside a short story, achingly

well written and tasted the pleasure of

it slightly edged with envy because it was


so good! And then I deliberated between

frying and roasting, Netflix and reading

(then found my smallest butter colored

cat napping inside a small, cheap, plastic

bag, swooning like a princess with her crown


as the plastic crackled to her great delight)

and chose sensibly my treats and glowed!


My Rose Pavilion of Left Overs!

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My Rose Pavilion day with Left Overs!



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Guilt wrapped me up tight in its bony hands on a Sunday. 1. over that still unsolved work wound now infested with bitter grey green maggots! 2. with worry and grief over a distant relative so old and in pain and in hospital, 3. and those worrisome meddling women, a large army of them in the park to help customers, watching me ravenously, furiously for bribes, (they are always missing when really needed to find a plant) 4. that creepy little man in the vegetable market trying to force me to buy all his old stock of snacks who is like the ghoul at the end of my park trip! Then my Rose Pavilion came up inside and told me to just stay home! So I did just that!

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I think it is made up of memories of the most enchanting or enchanted roses that have ever slipped into my inner casket of better, buttered and blessed moments of magic!


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I did not even go to the grocery store for the soaps, salt, butter, eggs, yoghurt, greens all urgently needed, and cashew nuts just for fun, as it rained. I instead fell inside a lovely movie Rangoon (with the delightful, chirpy Kangana Raunat) and realized that though my favourite movie reviewer Anupama Chopra had found it flawed, it was really quite nice! Perhaps because the entire cast was very good, except for the British actor who hammed horribly! And yet Kangana Raunat held the entire movie in her slim body and swept me through the minutes gladly. The music was fresh as home made pancakes, and added to joy.


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Instead of napping in the evening and attracting the same sodden sour dreams boiled with work bullies and boors I went down to find one remaining spinach packet in the fridge, and two tomatoes! I cooked a spicy spinach dal, used up the last of the paratha dough and made six of them for dinner. Used up the last of the half cucumber for salad!


I then went up and looked at the very small red rose coming up on my terrace, which had grown a little bigger and warmed my rainy evening! Then the slate grey stray cat arrived and gratefully ate up all the left overs of the fresh fish my snooty cats had ignored on their plates. I wondered what it is about left overs being used up that makes all women so happy?!


Then I cleared out the leaves, mud and fish bones on the terrace and put them inside the compost bin. Planted several cuttings of the bronze and grey philodendron (which as usual was growing madly, rapidly, generously, inside five pots) on top of the compost just to see what could happen with it! Made hot coffee and enjoyed it.


The rose pavilion inside me noted this day hugely filled up with only left overs which had mysteriously clocked up endless hours of shimmering happiness!


Morning’s Red Notebook of lists

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Morning’s Red Notebook of Helpful Hints:


Banish greenfly from your roses


Bury cloves of garlic at the foot of your rose bushes to ward off greenfly. You may find you have planted garlic, in which case you will have even fewer greenfly and more garlic, says Diana, Lady Avebury, Literary agent. From Superhints.


Also remember that dripping garlic oil gently into the ear canal has helped to treat fungal infections as well as or better than pharmaceutical drugs.


Taken internally, garlic can help cure a middle ear infection. If you have ear ache, add more garlic to your cooking. You might also try putting a few drops of garlic oil in the painful ear. From: The Green Pharmacy, James A. Duke.


Pics: daksha


Green Gifts for any happy time!

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  1. greengiftsCloth napkins and napkin rings.
  2. cloth dish towels
  3. books like Save Our Planet
  4. donations to the needy
  5. photographs
  6. low flow shower head
  7. a set of biodegradable no-phosphate cleaners
  8. adorethis
  9. a solar watch or calculator
  10. an energy saving fluorescent light fixture
  11. for friends with children, five hours of free babysitting!
  12. a day trip on a train
  13. a tree!

from: Save Our Planet by DIANE MacEACHERN

pics: daksha



The Pink Portfolio for the PLANET!

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  1. Water wastage affects the third world frighteningly. So remember not to waste it.portfolio
  2. Remember that a tap leaking at one drop per second wastes 10,000 litres of water a year! Most drips can be stopped by renewing the washer!
  3. Toothbrushing for two minutes morning and night accounts for about 9 litres for each person per day!
  4. Most of us leave the tap open while we brush!
  5. If you want to see how much unused water goes down the sink put the plug in before you start to run water. As the basin fills up, you’ll soon see how much is there and be prompted to turn off the tap!
  6. port1
  7. A greener way to brush your teeth is by filling a small mug with water before you start and use that for swilling instead!
  8. Use a bucket for car cleaning and a bowl for washing vessels!
  9. Now even the third and final wash of my spinach or other greens in a colander is done under an empty large bowl so that the final water is saved inside it. I found out that this could be used to water more than 20 pots in the garden!
  10. pics and text: daksha
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