Ready, steady, Cook!

Filed in Blog by on December 23, 2009 6 Comments
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How to make a plastic free curry in minutes

How to make a plastic free curry in minutes

I’ve been slaving in the kitchen for you again, dear readers.

This time I’m exploding a myth about our zero waste lifestyle. Lots of people say they could never do what we do because they don’t have enough time.

Point taken; it’s a pain in the derrière to swill out the cans and Tetra Pak cartons sometimes, especially when you’re just starting on the journey and organisation isn’t yet in place. Or if Eastenders is about to start.

Then you’ve got to set up a place to store all your recycling, remember to take your reusable shopping bags and pick up individual fruit and vegetables rather than pre-packed.You have to read labels, browse the aisles for the best packaging choices and spend time taking your recyclable items to the Bring banks.

Sure it takes a little more time at first until habits fall into place.

Making food from scratch can be time consuming, but it doesn’t have to be.

As I demonstrate in this video, I can knock up a curry in less than three minutes! By roasting the onions and chicken on a Sunday when the oven is on anyway and chucking in a jar of curry sauce, it takes me as much time as it would to get one of those bloomin’ plastic film lids from a convenience meal.

And the best bit? A curry in a plastic tray, which serves one meal costs around £2.99

My dish costs £4.50 but makes enough for 3 meals.

The landfill wins and so does my bank balance 😉

What about you; what zero waste meals can you rustle up in minutes?



About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (6)

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  1. Alea says:

    Excellent point! It does take some getting used to at first. However, once your into the swing of it, cooking from scratch becomes quite easy. Plus it tastes so much better, is healthier because you have complete control of the ingredients, and creates less waste.

  2. Ailbhe says:

    Not sure what I could cook from scratch quickly, but lots of things using instafood like jars and cans. I try not to because it’s not like recycling is zero-cost though. Cooking from scratch is generally less wasteful.

  3. just Gai says:

    Pasta wth a sauce is my standby. In the time it takes for the pasta to cook it’s perfectly possible to rustle up a simple yet delicious sauce to stir through it. Favourites include tomato (sweat diced onion and garlic and pour over a tin of chopped tomatoes and garnish with a handful of fresh basil), tuna (diced onions and garlic again, this time with a tin of tuna, a splash of sherry and a swirl of cream), anchovy (chopped, with a glug of olive oil and a handful of breadcrumbs), carbonara (sweat diced bacon with garlic, add to the pasta, stir in a couple of beaten egg yolks and finish with a handful of peas and a grating of parmesan) or, if you really can’t be bothered to dirty another pan, simply stir in a couple of tablespoons of pesto sauce from a jar.

    Omelettes are another doddle, filled with just about any leftovers from the fridge.

    Then there’s savoury fried rice, stirfries, couscous …

    All it takes is a judiciously stocked larder and a bit of imagination!

  4. Sandie says:

    ‘Luxury Crunchy Chocolates’

    1. Melt Cooking Chocolate in a dish over boiling water.

    2. Crumble in some Weetbix and Coconut.

    3. Spoon into mini paper patti pans.

    4. Dust with a little Icing Sugar.

    They look and taste a million dollars ………. too easy …….

  5. Sweet & Sour Balti Chicken is my favourite and I always make sure I’ve got a good stock of garam masala spice mix in my cupboard for the occasion.

    Add some oil to a wok (preferably corn oil, but other vegetable based oil will do).

    Mix according to taste some Greek Yogurt, mango chutney, garlic and tomato puree, then add to the hot oil. Stir, then when it starts to bubble add the chicken.

    Pour in some water to dilute the sauce a little, season with salt, pepper and chilli powder and simmer for a while longer – time depends on whether chicken is pre-cooked, which if that’s the case it only takes five minutes.

    It’s not essential but if you have some cream and fresh coriander, you can add these before serving . Serve with rice.

    And as it’s Christmas, it works with turkey leftovers too.

    On that note….Merry Christmas Mrs G – hope you have a wonderful time. x

  6. Mrs Green says:

    Oh yum; thanks for all your thoughts and recipe ideas, Ladies. It’s great to pool resources. We’ve got a few days meals between us I think 😀

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