From prep to post: your low-waste Christmas spread
It’s almost here! One of the most awaited days of the year when the whole family congregates; the traditional stuffing recipe that’s only trotted out once yearly finally appears on the dinner table; and it’s acceptable to either stay in pj’s all day or get dressed up in our best, only to stay indoors for a day of board games.
At a time of such indulgence you might not be surprised to learn that waste in the UK increases by 30% at this time of year. We’re all foodies here at ODDBOX HQ and our belts are already loosening in anticipation but we’re also doing our best to be conscious of our waste in this season of abundance. If you’re waste-conscious but struggling with ways to implement this, read on for our favourite simple swaps and low-waste tips for this year’s Christmas dinner…
1. CATER FOR YOUR NUMBERS
We’ve come to expect mountains of vegetables, free-flowing drinks and a showstopping centrepiece. This can all still be a reality but, with a few calculations, you don’t need to be eating leftovers well into the new year. Why not take a moment to consider the quantities needed for the number of guests you’re catering to? With all the mince pies and chocolates floating around throughout the day, you can be certain that no one will be going hungry and it will also reduce the amount of work that goes into the preparation!
2. SHOP SUSTAINABLY
We know, with the endless to-do’s in the final run up to Christmas, it might be easiest to run down to the closest supermarket to tick off your shopping list. However, there can be a trade off in the form of the plastic packaging used for portioning and to extend shelf-life.
Instead, this year, you can use your Christmas box from ODDBOX to create all the festive trimmings for your Christmas spread. This seasonal special, with minimal packaging, contains enough produce to serve 7 or 8 people without leaving you with a mountain of leftovers - perfect if you have a large family or guests visiting. We also have an add on Roast Veg Booster box which will cater for a slightly smaller party.
If you’ve missed out on our Christmas box why not shop local and head down to your greengrocers? They’ll be fully stocked with your favourite veg in anticipation of the Christmas rush, all loose and ready to be selected in quantities exactly right for the number of guests you’re catering for. Bulk stores are also a fantastic source for any dry food and pantry essentials you need. Your Christmas spread with a conscience.
3. HOLD ONTO THOSE PEELS
Sprout leaves, potato peelings, carrot tops… all of these trimmings can be diverted from the compost. If you’re prepping your veg in advance, simply pop these peelings into a large saucepan, cover with plenty of water and simmer up over a day to create a delicious, hearty stock you can use as the base for your veggie gravy on Christmas day. Otherwise, stick them all in a bag and keep in the freezer to make up your stock another day.
4. SHARE THE SPARE
In the event that you still end up with more leftover than you know what to do with, send them to a good home! If you’ve been entertaining , tell your guests to come along with a container or two and load them up with a few servings of each dish when they leave. Otherwise, OLIO is a fantastic outlet for any food that you’d rather not see go to waste. List your item on the app with a photo or two and wait for the requests to come flying in!
5. RENEW YOUR LEFTOVERS
If you’ve managed to get your serving sizes almost spot on and have just a few portions of roast veg going spare, consider whipping up a batch of ‘Boxing Day soup’. Simmer up any Christmas dinner leftovers and blend for a warming soup that will get you through those Boxing Day blues.
Do you have any of your own tips that you use to make your day more sustainable? Let us know in the comments!
Happy Christmas from The ODDBOX Team