In Which I Attempt to Avoid Wasting Stuff


February 18, 2011 by Leah

For some reason, we haven’t been going through our groceries as fast as we once did. Maybe because I’m on a diet (I rejoined Weight Watchers Online this week, so that’s another $18 per month we don’t have, but I’ve had historical success with the program and I really want to drop another 25 pounds, so I think it will be worth it) or because Aaron hasn’t been working out as much. I switched our standing milk order from a gallon a week to half a gallon a week and even that seems like too much now. Usually when the milk collection in the fridge gets too large, I try to turn it into something more shelf-stable, like yogurt, but I already had more than two pints of yogurt. (I also like to make butter out of aging cream – you get butter AND buttermilk!) So, prior to nine o’clock this morning, these are the things I made (actually I chopped all the kumquats and tangerines last night so they could soak):

Blurry beginnings of marmalade and mozzarella

Marmalade (’cause that’s what you make when you discover you have thirty kumquats and a bag of tangerines in your kitchen):

Kumquat-tangerine marmalade.



Mozzarella curds

Hot water bath


Stretching the cheese is fun

All done. Yum. Except I forgot to add salt. Better than the too much I added last time, though.

Oh yeah, and labneh (yogurt cheese), because we’re going through more of that than yogurt these days:

Seriously, you just hang yogurt in some cheesecloth and let it stand for a while.

And then you get this yummy spread. I use it as a substitute for cream cheese, goat cheese, whatever.

There’s also some bread rising.

Of course, I’ve still had to send more to the compost bin than I’d like lately. E.g., we get these big bags of salad greens from the urban farm CSA. While I think this is great, Aaron’s mouth sometimes finds culinary landmines like arugula. This situation makes it hard for us to get through a whole bag in a week. Or, sometimes things like tatsoi just get lost behind the jars in the fridge containing what has to be at least a gallon of whey, which is leftover after making any kind of cheese. I try to remember to use whey instead of water when I make bread, and it’s handy for soaking nuts or grains or making lacto-fermented foods. (Speaking of lacto-fermentation, so far we have tried this treatment on ketchup and carrots. The former was great, the latter… not so much.)

So, anyway, here is photographic proof that sometimes I think ahead and make wise decisions. This is not evident in every aspect of my life, though, e.g. the decision to rejoin Weight Watchers ON VALENTINE’S DAY probably could have been rethought with no additional harm to any of those involved.


5 thoughts on “In Which I Attempt to Avoid Wasting Stuff

  1. Glo Clendaniel says:

    never a bad time to join weight watchers. if we waited for a time in our lives when there wasn’t a holiday, or birthday, or some other big event being celebrated with food….we’d wait our entire lives.

    Good luck you can do it!. and I am so envious of your culinary experiments. They look rewarding and fun!

  2. David G says:

    Have you done a post on how to make cheese and yogurt? If not will you? Or at least post where you found out how to make them. Thanks

  3. leahkathlyn says:

    That’s a good idea, David. I’ll make some yogurt this week, just for you. 🙂

  4. […] make labneh (pictures here), or yogurt cheese, you just need to dump one of your jars of yogurt into some cheesecloth and […]

  5. […] make labneh (pictures here), or yogurt cheese, you just need to dump one of your jars of yogurt into some cheesecloth and […]

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