This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.
Have you eaten a wheelie-bin curry this week? How about garbage truck turkey spring rolls or even a put-out-your-recyclables pudding?
You may have seen that Derby City Council's bin timetables that have been left on your wheelie-bins or posted through your letterbox have had an upgrade this festive season.
The authority says that, over the course of a year, UK residents throw away seven million tonnes of food and drink.
So, it is trying to reduce that amount by suggesting recipes for all those odds and ends you might find while rummaging through the fridge one evening.
One Derby resident said: "I just thought it was bizarre, really. I was bleary-eyed and taking the bins in before I went to work and saw this vegetable curry recipe.
"It was a bit patronising too, to be honest. If I want to know how to make a good curry, I’ll look on the Good Food website, or in a recipe book. I’m not going to ask Derby City Council.
"The council seems to have a lot of creativity when it comes to things like this but perhaps it could use that enthusiasm with stuff that’s a bit more important."
One recipe featured on the bins is a vegetable curry that intends to use up all the vegetables like Brussels sprouts that no-one wants to eat at Christmas.
Vegetable Curry Recipe
1kg mixed vegetables
3 onions, peeled and roughly chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
1 tin chickpeas
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
300ml vegetable stock (1 stock cube)
1 tbsp curry powder (add more if you like it hotter)
In a large pan, combine all the ingredients except the rice, add the vegetable stock and mix thoroughly. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and allow the mixture to simmer, stirring occasionally. Cook for 30 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the stock has reduced to produce a nice, thick sauce. Cook the rice as per the packet instructions. Serve the curry with the rice and warm naan bread.
Another is designed to use up the turkey that you inevitably will either put in a sandwich or otherwise throw away.
Turkey and Cranberry Spring Rolls
200g turkey leftovers
1 stick of celery
½ red onion
50g cranberry sauce
½ small leek
2 tablespoons soya sauce
8 sheets of spring roll pastry
1 egg in 20ml milk (eggwash)
Sunflower oil and salt
Cut all the vegetables into fine strips, known as julienne, and mix together. Heat a non-stick frying pan, add a tablespoon of oil then sauté half of the vegetables on a high heat for 2-3 mins. Pour veg into a colander over a bowl to drain off fat, then repeat with the other half of the veg. Mix turkey and veg together, then season with cranberry sauce. Place a pastry sheet on a clean work surface. Spoon 2 tablespoons of turkey mixture diagonally across the centre of the pastry sheet, leaving a 4cm border at each end. Brush the corners and sides with egg wash. Fold in the ends and roll up firmly to enclose filling (you should have a 10cm-long spring roll). Repeat with the remaining pastry and turkey mixture. To cook shallow fry in a little oil until the pastry is crisp and golden.
And who ever finishes the entire Christmas Pudding? Well, now you can, with this recipe.
Chocolate Fondant Pudding
125g dark chocolate 70%
150g caster sugar
50g Christmas pudding
3 large eggs
35g plain flour
Melt butter slowly over a low heat in a pan. Once melted, remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Whisk eggs and sugar together until well combined, then add the flour. Stir both mixtures together and crumble in the Christmas pudding. Pour into buttered moulds, preferably small pudding basins. Bake at 190ºC for 10-12 minutes, making sure centre is still runny.
Derby City Council says it was advertising the recipes as a way of reducing waste and making food last longer.
A spokesperson said: "We have committed to helping people reduce the amount of food they throw in the bin, working with Love Food Hate Waste to promote healthy, simple recipes for leftovers.
"We have included a recipe on every Christmas bin tag in Derby to encourage people to use up all their leftovers over Christmas, saving money and reducing food waste.
"As people often buy a lot of vegetables for their Christmas dinner, we thought a vegetable curry would be a good suggestion for using up any uneaten carrots, sprouts or parsnips.
"On the other bin tags, we have chosen recipes that will help use up any leftover turkey.
"Love Food Hate Waste also explains how to store your food to make it last longer. There is plenty of advice on the website to help households in Derby make the most of their Christmas food.
"We will be promoting this further over the Christmas break, showing people that the odds and ends of their party food don’t have to end up at the bottom of the bin."
This year's recipes follow the city council's crafty idea last winter for people to recycle their Christmas trees by making coasters.
We, in fact, tried out the council's recycling advice, with reporter Isaac Crowson getting his saw and varnish out.