- Open bottles of jams and preserves that have not been touched for months
- Ingredients bought for a specific recipe that you have not used again
- Foods given to you as gifts but that you never get around to using
- Food at the back of the freezer that you can't even get to
- Bottles lined up in the fridge door filled with mysterious sauces
- Leftovers in the fridge waiting to be used up before you forget about them and chuck them out next weekend
- Ingredients that you buy because they are nutritious and you feel like you should be eating them, but you can't think of ways to use them, so they sit there, taking up space and mocking you
- Foods that are dangerously close to or just past the expiration date
- Overripe bananas that you are collecting in the freezer
- Spices that you bought in bulk because the price was right but are now rapidly losing their flavor
- A bulk package of something that will last you until 2035
- Ingredients that you are saving for a "special occasion" that never comes
- Impulse purchases from grocery shopping trips that are sitting around 6 months later and making you feel guilty
If you raised your hand at any point while reading the list above, listen up, because I have a challenge for you. This month's Blog Bites event is all about using recipes from food blogs as the inspiration to use up the foods and ingredients that are lurking in our kitchens.
Find the lurkers in your kitchen and clean them out by using them up to make something new and tasty. Don't let those ingredients take up valuable space; real estate is very precious in most kitchens. Don't let your leftovers end up in the trash; food is a precious commodity. Above all, don't have a cluttered kitchen when you can have one that is well-organized and a pleasure to work in.
All this month, I will be using up ingredients from my pantry, fridge and freezer. I plan to use it or lose it: use whatever I can to make something tasty and if I come upon things that are already beyond use, then to toss them away instead of hanging on to them with a guilty feeling. If I find ingredients that I don't want to use, I will try and give them to someone who can use them.
If you want to join me, we will end up making good use of the ingredients that are already in our kitchens, minimizing waste and discovering new recipes in the process, and hopefully end up with a kitchen that is less cluttered and easier to work in.
If you are looking for inspiration to go after the lurkers in your kitchen and clean them out, here are 5 links:
- Periodic table of the shelf life of condiments (just for fun)
- How to stock a minimalist pantry
- Pantry cleaning tips from The Kitchn
- 10 tips for reducing food waste
- Wasted Food blog
So, if you want to join me this month in cleaning out the kitchen, here are...
- (a) From now until June 25, look through your kitchen for ingredients that need to be used up, and (b) look through your favorite blogs for ways to use them. That's the theme of the month- to use up the ingredients lurking in your kitchen and cluttering it up.
- The recipe has to come from another blog. This is the whole premise of the Blog Bites event, so please turn to other blogs for inspiration.
- Write a post telling us about the recipe you tried, with the following: (a) A link to the recipe on the inspiring blog, (b) A link to this post announcing the event (c) Picture of your dish.
- Please do not copy a recipe word for word from another blog- that would be both illegal and unethical. Either re-write the recipe in your own words, or simply tell us about it with a link to the recipe. One of the reasons I am hosting this event is to promote the idea of cooking from blogs while giving them due credit.
- Please make sure your entry meets all the rules above. Then, send me the link (URL) of your entry, either by leaving a comment on this post, or using the contact form.
- You can send in as many entries as you like.
I will acknowledge the entries you send in by leaving a comment on your post and thanking you for the entry. Check back on July 26 to see the round-up.
We'll ask readers to vote for their favorite entry and I will send that participant a little gift. Very few people have been voting in the last 2 editions, so I guess readers/participants don't like this contest bit and I won't include it in this event any more.
Thank you for your participation!
My kitchen will thank you for hosting this event. No matter how thoughtful I am in buying new stuff, I always have these ingredients which I had bought and completely forgot about. This event will give me a chance to clean up my kitchen.ReplyDelete
Now this looks awesome...I am a person who declutters as a hobby! So my hand wasn't up all the way. But yes, I am so in for over ripe bananas and ma's over stocked spices in the deep freezer that I got from India.ReplyDelete
I love the foodie periodic table...so cute and loved the minimalist's pantry ideas too
Gosh! I got a fridge full of these ingredients. In fact, I raised my hand at every single point :)ReplyDelete
Nice idea! Very nice! I love making space!! :)ReplyDelete
One question, does the lurker, say, XYZ sauce need to be a listed ingredient used on the other person's blog? Or can we use it as a substitute or addition to a recipe that sounds like it might work with the XYZ sauce?
And this is not applicable to me as such, but people may have un-used appliances too. Could they maybe use that never used bread maker or bundt pan or whatever? (Will not make space though).
Anyway.. thanks! :)
My first contribution Nupur!ReplyDelete
If I only had a time machine! I'm moving next week (eek!) so I've been participating in the challenge for a while already :) But, no pics = no posts... Fun idea though, and I'll definitely be watching the results.ReplyDelete
I raised my hand for almost every single one of them!! yikes! Will need to get started. Chop, chop!ReplyDelete
hi...first time here..landed here thru preeti's blog..loved ur event..i feel ashamed of myself when i read and raised my hands for each and every point..its a perfect event to participate in and clean my pantry simultaneously ..pls do count me in..ReplyDelete
and if u get some time pls chk my tiny upcoming space..im glad to follow u
What a fantastic idea. Feels like you have magically surveyed my pantry and fridge and then wrote the article. I mean, over-ripe bananas in the freezer, sauces, jams, preserves,special occassion ingredients....It's embarassing but it's really so me! and now that I am in this mode of confession, let me also admit that I also gather all those appliances that just remain in my cabinets. I mean, crockpot, rice cooker, slow cooker, electric lemon juicer, roti maker - I mean seriously, my kitchen is full!
So true for a lot of us! Yikes! I just had to throw stuff from my second fridge because it needs some repair. First time ever it happened but felt so guilty, then I see this post!ReplyDelete
I raised my hand for most things! But the point is I'm carrying most of it to Syracuse - where I'm going to study. Alone. So, tons of stuff left for me to carry :DReplyDelete
Yay, am not that bad!
Oh my, that's such a fantastic idea! I'm sure most kitchens would give you a thank-you hug for this.ReplyDelete
Do I see you using yoghurt containers to store dry food stuff? I'm so relieved to know I'm not the only one who does that, since I keep getting mocked at by everyone :)
I raised my hand (virtually!) at #2 and #7. :)ReplyDelete
Hope I find the time to use them up and join you this month. Would love to.
Another beautiful choice..will definitely send my entries..ReplyDelete
Wonderful idea, I will be able to clean up my pantry or fridge that way :)ReplyDelete
I will surely go through those links provided as well, sound interesting and useful.
This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyDelete
It's funny you mention this. In a fit of frugality I have been making a concerted effort this week to cook the unused things from pantry and fridge. Dals for instance - I have a lot of them, but I always gravitate to the same ones: chana dal, cole, yellow mung beans, and sometimes whole mung for sprouting. And the others languish. And languish. I might use them once and then not again for months. So tonight I made a dal with split but not skinned mung. I can't even remember the last time I used those.ReplyDelete
And vaccum-packed chestnuts...from Thanksgiving how many years ago exactly? Hmmmmmmm...time to make Nigella's chestnut/lentil soup - which I did on Monday.
I am also the queen of condiments, but that's another story. I need to join a 12 step program for those, for sure. I have four kinds of nam prik alone (spicy Thai chile cooking paste and dip).
Hey what a great concept! Well... I did raise my hand quite a few times. I will try to participate. BTW, isn't this one BB3??? I haven't been able to follow it for a while, but see only 2 events under BB.ReplyDelete
I had my hands raised for almost the entire list. It's a great theme for BB, will definitely try to participate. Enjoy your long weekend.ReplyDelete
I love reading your posts both on cooking and crochet since I'm a new baking and crochet/knitting enthusiast too.
This event sounds like good fun! As luck would have it I have been trying to look for ways to use up a huge box of clementines and have been baking various orange flavored treats. Here is my post for Vegan Orange Cupcakes made with a lurker.
Were you in my kitchen recently!Like always we are thinking of the same things..did a stock chk yesterday and was thinking on same lines!count me in this time..missed the last one..and thanks a lot for this superb theme..xoxoReplyDelete
omg! can i say that i am feeling better already to see the company i have... i am going to love doing this... thanks for an awesome idea!ReplyDelete
OMG Nupur, i so need to read this post. This is indeed the story of my kitchen. Thanks for ur idea, i am so motivated now!ReplyDelete
Fantastic idea! Although I disposed a lot of items in the fridge when I moved a motnh back, but what do you know I have groceries accumulating already!ReplyDelete
I had to raise my hand seven times while reading your list :) Am definitely in!!!ReplyDelete
My 2nd contribution-
Anaamica- I know, I'm thoughtful too about buying groceries yet the stuff accumulates!!ReplyDelete
Preeti Kashyap- LOL I am hoarding many of those spices from India too. Thanks for that quick first entry!
Simran- Then I certainly hope you will participate this month :)
SS- Yes, feel free to adapt recipes from other blogs to ingredients you have on hand. It is just about using other blog recipes as inspiration, not that they have to be followed word for word.
Entries using neglected appliances are welcome too.
bek- You know, I was totally thinking of you when I wrote this post, because you mentioned about using lentils in mesir wat. Today is your big day and I hope you have a wonderful time!
Priya- Hope you can participate and clean out your kitchen :)
sonu- Don't be ashamed, just take action and cook some tasty stuff with all that food!ReplyDelete
Meera- Trust me, we are all in the same boat! And that boat is threatening to sink with the weight of all that food ;)
I hope you use up those ingredients and find creative ways to put those appliances to use, looking forward to your entries!
rk- Throwing away food feels so terrible, right? Don't worry, not trying to guilt you, we all need to do better at using food well.
An & N- Good luck with your move to Syracuse.
Preeti- Yes, I do use yogurt containers. People mocking me never stops me from doing whatever I want to do ;)
Aparna- I sure hope you can join us!
Priya (Yallapantula) Mitharwal- Yes, I am looking forward to a cleaner kitchen after this too.
Diane- I tend to use the same dals over and over too. And buy, those condiments sure multiply in the fridge.
Amruta- It is BB4. 1 was cookers, 2 was copycat, 3 was adaptation.
Pavani- I'm looking forward to your participation!
magpie- How fun that you enjoy the same things I do! Thank you so much for your delicious entry.
Madhuli- I hope you get time to participate- this edition will be fun because we have each other's company to do the dreaded job of cleaning the kitchen.
arundati- I know, now I am also getting excited about something that is normally very tedious ;)
uma- Story of all of our kitchens! Glad we are all motivating each other :)
Sangeetha- I know, only takes a week or two for stuff to collect again.
Divya Vikram- Great! Looking forward to your entries :)
Chaitra- Thanks, but this one does not fit the guidelines, I did include your first entry, thanks for that.
Oh yeah... I don't know how I missed reading it. I was just quickly going through the events list and saw only 2 events in there. Will go through the round up for all as I get time.ReplyDelete
Great theme and count me in.ReplyDelete
I think I raised my hand for everything except for the third one.
We keep buying so much that we not only stuff our kitchen but also the utility room, which is bigger than our kitchen. :)
Cleaning operation was completed a couple of weeks ago in my house since my parents are here now. However, I still have a lot of stuff which I haven't touched in months and will find ways to use them up from other blogs.
Thanks so much for putting out this challenge, which is very worthwhile on a couple of levels. And it's what we all know, but just do not always do; an important reminder.ReplyDelete
Living in Africa, and the fact that finding the desired items for storing can be very hit or miss--missing for months, sometimes--I tend to hoard when I do find those essential goods. But then, they can (and do) pile up, with expiry dates looming and sometimes passed.
This idea is much appreciated.
Gina in west Africa
Excellent event,will definitely check all my cupboards and fridge.ReplyDelete
Nupur -- you are full of great ideas! Here I am, raising any hand I can find ;)ReplyDelete
Here's my first entry for another wonderful event: http://jayawagle.blogspot.com/2010/06/homemade-double-chocolate-ice-cream-and.html
As to the contest for favorite entry, I think the voting is slow just because there are so many entries it is hard to go through each one. At least that is what I felt, as I went half way down the list.
Just a suggestion: Maybe you or another independent blogger could shortlist the entrees and then it would be easier to vote. :) I am happy just participating.
I agree with Jaya. It's not always possible to go through all the recipes,and appreciate them, especially if you are new to it. Also if you are like me, I tend to get lost in peoples' blogs, specially if I'm reading them for the first time. I ended up trying a recipe from one of the blogs that was from a year back, and not even related to the contest!!!! I got through only about half the recipes. I think that's why most of the people didn't vote.ReplyDelete
Anyway, contest or not, I think the BB series is a very innovative way to get people to read more food blogs, and try their hand at difficult stuff. In a way, I think it motivates people in two ways, to adapt a recipe in cooking as well as in writing.
Great idea Nupur.I always buy Indian stuff during my vacation in india and forget or cant find a suitable recipe to use them.Then all of a sudden when i am searching for something else thet pop up n i break my head on how to use them.This event will clean pantry.Leme see what I can do :)ReplyDelete
Here's my first entry -
Since I raised my hand for everything, I'm hoping to send in few more entries for this event.
This is my first entry for this BB event of using up stuff from the pantry that's been lying around unused.
All the enthusiasm on the comments section is infectious! Will definitely try to put up more entries.
I posted something for this.
Embarrassingly enough, I was able to participate even after I'd moved...ReplyDelete
Thank you for the inspiration!
Hi Nupur,I have posted an entry for the event -http://seduceyourtastebuds.blogspot.com/2010/06/bread-pulao.htmlReplyDelete
Thanks for hosting such an innovative theme
Hi nupur, happen to stumble into your blog fm Versatile Kitchen. Leaving to India this weekend, so i have started clearing my Fridge, Made some Spinach-Feta Rolls sending them to your event!!!!ReplyDelete
Entry #2 (yay!): http://pequalsmd.blogspot.com/2010/06/farinata.htmlReplyDelete
I tripped over ur blogspot while browing through bongmom cookbook .... I luved this theme. I ran into my pantry to see so many stuff hiding behind.
I'll surely try to give this a try and would luv to participate in this.
Thanks for inspiring to de clutter ..... I'm gonna forward this link to all my friends :)
Here's my second entry -
Entries #3 and #4 (I've really fallen in love with the theme): http://pequalsmd.blogspot.com/2010/06/black-bean-soup-with-onion-herb-bread.htmlReplyDelete
Here is my entry
I am glad I could use up the yeast before it expired. Here's my entry.
Hey Nupur.. thanks for visiting. Just for your record later my Zucchini Pachhadi entry to BB4 is at: http://ss-blogs-here.blogspot.com/2010/06/zucchini-pachhadi-chutney.htmlReplyDelete
I have been using up other stuff and making dishes. Might have one more for you. Posting only the ones that taste great and are photogenic! ;)
Here's my entry for bb4 -
here is my entry for BB4..
Love the concept...It was like digging for treasure in my kitchen, and 'Operation Kitchen Cleanup' has found its first victim. Here is my first entry: http://ohtastensee.wordpress.com/2010/06/12/sukku-kuzhambu-carrot-poriyal/
My second entry comes here..http://priyaeasyntastyrecipes.blogspot.com/2010/06/doublebutter-beans-curry.htmlReplyDelete
I've been a fan of yours for years but have just started blogging myself. Here's a link to my first BB4 post. I've made several other dishes and used up lots of things I have around but this is the first time I've taken a picture of anything.ReplyDelete
This is a great challenge. Thank you!
I ran into my kitchen to see whatz lurking .......n came up with this recipe.
Got inspired from the blog below
I replaced sesame seed with fennel seeds,coconut milk with whole milk and tapioca flour with Maida. But it still came out well.
Please find the link to my blog below where I posted the recipe.
hi nupur ,here's my first entry for ur wonderful event..hope to send few more..ReplyDelete
here's my second entry nupur..ReplyDelete
pls lemme know once u acknowledege these entries...thanx
im really sorry abt that have changed and linked back them to the original recipe ones,thank u for letting me know.
heres my third entry ...
I am back in Madison now and here is my (first) entry:
Here's my entry:
Here's my entry which happily gets rid of the tiny little packet of whole yellow peas.
More to come...
Thanks for hosting a thoughtful event like this.
here is my entry for the event.
Thanks for checking out my blog and BB4 recipe. Did your Aunt Terry teach at the Chautauqua Institution? I still have the recipes from that class but nothing with the teacher's name on it. It was a great class. Thanks to her I discovered blogging and a love of Indian food.ReplyDelete
I *won* a box of Sambar Marsala in that class and I'm about to use it and the result may end up in BB4 too.
Hai Nupur, this is a wonderful event. Here is my entryReplyDelete
Here goes my second entry. Fish Cutlet by Chef VKN.
I think I'm addicted to this theme, here's my next entry: http://pequalsmd.blogspot.com/2010/06/falafelentils.htmlReplyDelete
Nupur, here is my second entry.ReplyDelete
Here's my latest use of items already in my kitchen, including the Sambar Masala from my cooking class in Chautauqua NY.ReplyDelete
Hi dear, i tried to clean up my cupboard and made two entries, given the link, a bit delay in posting, my apologies. Happy hosting and blogging.ReplyDelete
this month's BB theme is so perfect for me Nupur. Here is my entry -ReplyDelete
I think posting the link in the comment section makes it such easy participation. Thanks for that. I hope everything is fine at your end. :D :D
Hi Nupur, As you have said i have changed my posts and given link to the recipe which i have adapted, but the recipe is not the exact same replica; for bread i have adapted only the idea of using zaatar with bread and with payasam Priya have used cracked wheat and i have used whole wheat, hope it suits your event and you are happy with it, please let me know if i have to change anything else. Thank you.ReplyDelete
Here is my Day 2 of Pantry Cleanup -
Here's another entry for BB4.
One more entry from me. Thanks to OHS because that's where I discovered the recipe link.
What a great idea to host an event? I am frantically trying every weekend to clean out my pantry. refrig before I go to Dierbergs for fresh grocery or to the Indian Store for veggies...Shall send in my entry super soon!
Hey Nupur ... here is my entry --ReplyDelete
just finishing off flour remains :)
Posted a bunch of recipes in my blog. Thanks for hosting the lovely event.
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.ReplyDelete
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.ReplyDelete
Ive linked to the original recipe at the bottom of the post again. hope to have solved the problem. Here is the link again:ReplyDelete
Sorry for the trouble caused
Thanks a lot for this event! Here is my entryReplyDelete
Here is my last entry for BB4: http://bala-shankar.blogspot.com/2010/06/purkouri-from-cyprus.html
Nice event here is my post
Another entry to this great event:
My pantry clean up was overdue; your event came just in time. Here is my entry
Hi Nupur, I am a Tam Bram married to a Kokansth Bram in Pune for the last five years. And for all these years I struggled to cook even basic food. Last month I happened to stumble upon your blog and must say I am hooked to your recipes. Before anything else, I must express heartfelt gratitude for helping me learn the basic Maharashtrian dishes without any trouble and yes getting all the brownie points from everyone in the family. My husband is simply marvelling at the fact that now I am dishing out a new dish almost everyday and yes, this is all thanks to your lovely blog. Carry on the good work and a big God Bless ! - Ranjani ShidhayeReplyDelete
Ranjani- Thank you for taking the time to send me your feedback. It makes me very happy to know that the recipes on my blog are being enjoyed by you and your family!ReplyDelete
Hey Nupur.. just getting in another entry - Punjabi Kadhi Pakoda.ReplyDelete
88 comments..! Must be quite a few entries here! Whew! :)
Hi Nupur,Just made a two-in-one post and Thanks to this event, the Ovaltine was saved from becoming a solid mass within the bottle and the milk powder packets been used before expiry is due.ReplyDelete
The link is,
Sorry about putting it off till late.
Nupur, here is the link to my "cleaned up" pantry. Will send you a couple of pics before the day is over. Will try not to clog your inbox. :)ReplyDelete
Hi Nupur am I late? though published the recipe on 23rd but sorry for being late in informing you. here is the spicy fried noodle dish adapted from My Kitchen snippets (mykitchensnippets.com). hope you will like it.ReplyDelete
Hi Nupur,I think I just posted in time.ReplyDelete
Here's my entry:
Sorry if I am too late.
Here is my entry
Here's my last entry for your event.
This is my contribution to your event :)