Easy, Fast and Cheap Lunch Idea

I am the worlds worst at buying fruits and vegetables and then not using them or not using them all and then they end up in the bin!  I really want to eat salad but when I'm tired its much easier to grab a bag of frozen veges than it is to clean, peel and chop.

In an effort to really reduce my food waste I have been learning how I can prepare and store foods in advance so that it is easier to use them in cooking and meal preparation.

I purchased a salad spinner from Stevens.co.nz when it was on sale and I am now a convert to such wonderful gadgets!  Chop up your salad leaves and any other hardy ingredients that need washed (I sliced up some cucumber and capsicum) and pop them in the basket.  Next add some cold water, attach the lid and give it a spin - this will give the salad a good wash.  Once you are happy that its washed (or you want to change the water) drain the water out - this spinner has holes on top to do this without having to remove the lid.  Then spin the salad again to dry off and once dry put salad into a zip lock bag - add any other ingredients like tomato wedges and then seal the bag removing as much air as you can.

Stevens Salad Spinner with Green Trim 4.5 Litre
So now you have salad for the week, but it's not the most exciting lunch on it's own.  Did you know you can freeze cheese?  This has revolutionised my shopping as I can now buy bigger blocks of cheese and buy multiples when they are on sale and put them in the freezer.  I cut the bigger blocks into smaller blocks that I would use in a week and often I put a whole block through the food processor to grate it before putting into a ziploc bag and then the freezer.

http://www.amazon.com/Toastabags-Reusable-Non-Stick-Sandwich-Grilling/dp/B001UHNMM0/ref=sr_1_1?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1398643173&sr=1-1&keywords=toaster+pocketsNow I'm sure I'm not the first person to think of this but I had a brainwave to make a whole loaf of cheese sandwiches and then freeze them to be made into cheese toasties.  I can get 11 cheese toasties out of a loaf of bread. If you don't have a sandwich press toaster bags do the same job.

I have ones similar to these:

So easy, fast and cheap too:  a tasty cheese toastie with a nice side salad.