I fully understand, as well, that taking the first steps can seem quite daunting. So I thought I'd try to highlight a few everyday practices here...for beginners...or as reminders to those of us who sometimes forget...or want to take the next step. Because, sometimes I stop and notice that I've started doing something again that I thought I'd overcome. Sometimes a habit just creeps back in, without my notice.
So here are some little practices that can make a huge collective difference! Please feel free to make suggestions or ask questions along the way! We're all in this together (as high school musical would say...or sing)! :)
#01 :: Let's eat the food we buy...even those flabby carrots. Wash them, (no need to peel them), cut off the ends, slice, + add to soups or stir fry. Roast them along with some other root vegetables. This applies to most vegetables.
Add overripe fruit to smoothies.
Stick brown bananas in the freezer + blend them later into banana ice-cream or banana bread.
Toast bread ends or dried out bits in the oven to make bruschetta, croutons, or breadcrumbs.
Make a big batch of iced-tea with that not-favorite tea. Add lemon, honey, +/or mint.
Cold brew that not-favorite coffee + mix with lots of ice + milk.
Don't buy more of something until the other one is used up.
Take a look into the cupboards and pull out all the things that need to be used up. Make some cookies and add all the last bits of nuts, seeds, and dried fruit...or combine them and add them to your granola in the mornings. Plan some meals around using up the last bits of things...and maybe make a note not to replace the things that are hard to use up.
If food really goes bad...compost, if possible. Reconsider the necessity of repurchasing.
Obviously buying only what we will eat is the front end necessity here. A menu coordinated shopping list helps me so much in this area. Having everything where I will see it helps as well. It's hard to remember to use something hidden behind eight half-used bottles of dressing. :)
What are your tricks for using up overlooked food?