Inspired by Food Waste Action Week here are three simple and quick recipes you can make with food scraps and left overs. They're delicious and help to use up fruit and veggies that are past their best. All the recipes can be made with dairy or vegan alternatives so there is something here for everyone!
Leftover Banana Loaf
This gooey banana loaf is filling and great for a mid morning or mid afternoon pick me up. You can use up fruit which is past its best and over ripe bananas can be stored in the freezer until you have enough to make a loaf.
This loaf cake can be eaten on its own or spread with butter. If it goes a little stale (it probably won't hang around that long) you can also toast it.
5 over ripe bananas
1 apple or pear
60g butter or dairy free margarine if vegan
120g brown sugar (any sugar will do though)
120g dairy or soy yoghurt
180g self raising flour
Method: Mash the bananas in a large bowl then add in all the other ingredients and mix well. You can also add in chopped nuts, dried fruit too if you have some to use up. Tip into a greased / lined tin or use a silicone loaf mould and bake at 170c (fan oven) for 55-60 mins.
These chewy oat cookies are a quick and easy bake. They're great for using up fruit when you've bought too much and I often make them when we have random apple and banana halves in the fridge that are past their best.
If you have leftover porridge from kids breakfasts (why do they always leave a spoonful?!) you can also add this in.
50g butter or dairy free spread
2tbsp maple syrup or honey
1 apple coarsely grated and / or banana instead
50g dried fruit - raisins, apricots, anything you have
50g spelt flour self raising also works
40g nuts or ground almonds (or use extra oats)
1 egg or chia egg
Method: Melt together the butter, syrup/honey in a pan and add the apple to cook for 5 mins.
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl, add the syrupy apple mixture and the egg and beat really well to combine. If you have any leftovers like porridge or banana to add in you can do it at this point.
Spoon the mixture onto a greased baking tray into ten little dollops and press down to the desired thickness.
Bake for 18-20mins at 160c fan oven
Mummy's 'Fridge' Pasta
Affectionately known in our house as 'fridge pasta' this is a really easy and quick lunch or dinner. You can use up whatever you have lurking in the fridge before shopping day and it's great for using up veg scraps and peeling or veg that's past its best.
The added bonus is that little fussy eaters will never know what's in it! If you're not going to eat the same day you can store in the fridge or freeze in portions for another day.
2 tins of chopped or plum tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic
fresh or dried basil
1tsp vegetable bouillon powder
parmesan, cheddar, goats cheese, or a dairy free cheese (can b skipped0
dried or fresh pasta
any leftover cooked or raw veggies you have in the fridge
Method: chop the onion and garlic and fry until softened, add in any veggies you have to use up - this can literally be anything as they will be blitzed up when cooked so it doesn't matter if they don't traditionally go in a pasta sauce (think cauliflower, broccoli, beetroot etc). Cook until the veggies for five minutes then add in two tins of chopped tomatoes, any cooked left over veg, basil and the bouillon powder. You can also add in red or white wine at this point if you have some to use up. Simmer on a low heat for around 20 mins or until everything is soft.
Leave the sauce to cool a little before blitzing up with a hand blender or in a nutri bullet.
The sauce can be served simply over pasta with or without cheese sprinkled on top or alternatively you can also use it as the base for spag bol, chilli or any other dish with a tomato based sauce.
Best of all it can be frozen in containers to use at a later date.
Start freezing any over ripe bananas, veg peelings, scraps and left overs and when you have a good amount get batch cooking!
If you try any of our recipes let me know how you get on and if you have a top tip or recipe to share get in touch because I'd love to feature it.