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Dry goods

When it comes to cooking dry foods like rice, pasta or beans do you leave little bits for next time, when you don't need the full amount?

If you’re anything like me you roll up the packet to keep the contents safe then pop them back in the cupboard. There they sit waiting for next time, somewhere far in the future that never arrives because no two things have the same cooking time.

The answer, once I’d figured it out, is simple. Keep a bag or food container in the freezer, one for every food type. Take rice for example, when you cook it don’t leave a little bit in the packet, cook the lot and add the leftovers to your grain bag. If you do the same with all your grains, you'll have a bag of mixed grains that will reheat at the same time. You can do the same with different pulses and different pastas.

The beauty of doing this isn’t just a saving bits from the bin, you’re also saving on cooking fuel and, most importantly, your time.

Some ideas for you

Precooked mixed grains can be-reheated and served in place of plain rice, a mixed grain stir-fry or multigrain salad.

A mixed bag of cooked pasta may not win any prizes on the design front but it will make some incredibly easy and fun family meals.

Precooked mixed pulses make wonderful salads, or a quick curry. Try adding them to an existing stew or curry to make it go further.

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