Quick Tip: Create a List of Endangered Foods


The other day A. was looking through the fridge and, predictably, stumbled upon some green vegetative matter hidden behind the tomato paste and adobo chilies.

 “What is this?” he asked.

 “I’m not sure,” I replied. “But it might have been kale. Or it might have been the single organism that all life originated from 4 billion years ago.”

“Can’t you just buy what you need, when you need it?” he cried, exasperated. “Must you buy half the grocery store, only to let it rot away in the fridge?”

He had a point. I get seduced by the asparagus that is finally in season, or the sweet potatoes that remind me of that recipe I want to try, or the cremini mushrooms I’m sure I’ll use a thousand times over. Then all that wonderful produce dies a slow death in the crisper.

So this time, I thought I would try something different. I made up a List of Endangered Foods, and marked down anything in my fridge that was in danger of going extinct. Whenever I make a meal or a snack, I have to look at that list and use at least one ingredient from it.

So far, it’s working remarkably well. Having that list on the fridge means those foods are top of mind, not pushed behind the box of baking soda and forgotten. Also, it makes me come up with new and creative combinations in a quest to use up as many of the endangered foods as I can (see Exhibit A above – leftover brown rice, shrimp from last night’s dinner, garlic-sauteed spinach from breakfast, and slightly over-roasted pureed sweet potato that Baby M. refused to eat.)

What methods do you have to make sure all the food in your fridge gets eaten? Or do you let it all eventually go to that big compost heap in the sky?

P.S – There are some exciting new developments here at The Wholesome Hedonist! You can now subscribe for email updates of the site or follow me on Pinterest or Twitter by clicking on the links on the sidebar. I’ll report interesting food articles, yummy looking recipes, and the occasional update on the fascinating life of a mom on maternity leave.

P.P.S – I will be on a much-anticipated vacation for all of next week so it will be kind of quiet around here. But I promise to be back with tons of news, recipes and fun stuff to share. Meanwhile, let’s all join our heads in prayer for a calm and uneventful four-hour flight in a crowded airplane with a 10 month old. And we might as well pray for the other passengers, too.

One Response to “Quick Tip: Create a List of Endangered Foods”
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  1. […] pumpkin soup and sauteed brussels sprouts for dinner just so I could cross brussels sprouts off my list of endangered foods! That’s commitment for […]

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