As a food rescue organization, we all appreciate the effects of food waste and food insecurity. But is it something we keep in mind over our holiday? It is extra work to think about when we’re on a holiday, and it is easy to over-cook and leave something in the refrigerator until it goes bad. But there’s lots of easy and fun ways to reinvent your leftovers and not contribute to the nearly $293 million in food waste that will happen over the Thanksgiving holiday.
Ultimately, we want to keep ourselves and our families safe this season. Keep in mind that something slightly questionable that may not affect you may be quite harmful for a young child, the elderly, or someone with an altered immune system (e.g. chemotherapy treatment, post-transplant, certain other drugs, conditions, etc.). In some tragic cases food-borne illness causes kidney failure and death, and we now know from recent research that some people can even end up with long-term effects from food-borne illness.
When you are cooking for a lot of people, it’s best to treat the meal as if you know someone you are serving falls into one of the above-mentioned categories. A few basic solutions are washing hands and produce, being aware of and avoiding any potential cross-contamination, cooking foods up to temperature, and not leaving foods at room temperature for greater than 2 hours for grazing.
Thankful for Ideas
- Drop cranberries in a Bundt pan, add water and freeze for a festive ice ring to drop into your favorite punch. You could also add orange slices, muddle the cranberries a little, and/or do ½ orange juice ½ water for a more flavorful ring!
- Transforming leftovers into a nice breakfast quiche or casserole is a different way to utilize them. See a recipe to work off here. Simply replace the protein and other ingredients with whatever you have.
Hope these helpful tips make your holiday season both safe and delicious.