A Christmas Gift for You: Gift Jars!

With Christmas fast approaching we are readying ourselves for the gift giving season.

We know that you have so much love to share, so many great intentions to show just how grateful you are for all the wonderful people in your lives.  We also know that giving a thing doesn’t always match up with your eco values but maybe you don’t necessarily want to turn up empty handed.

And so the Gift Jar was born!

We have a range of jars available for order at the store but since we are more about sharing the zero waste love than we are about profiting from the commercialism and consumerism of Christmas, below is your own printable version of the gift jar labels that we are using in store this Christmas.

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So, if you want to make them on your own you now have what you need!

And if you don’t have the time or just like the idea of us making them up for you, give us a call, an email or visit us to order at least 3 days in advance (up to 7 days as we get closer to Christmas).


Zero Waste Muesli Bars

½ cup (125mL) honey or 1/4 honey/peanut butter
¼ cup caster sugar
125g butter
3 cups rolled oats/cornflakes
1 cup Rice Bubbles
1 cup sultanas
½ cup chopped apricots, dates or choc chips
½ cup desiccated coconut
¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seed kernels), sunflower or sesame seeds

 

Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease and line a slice tray (mine is 31 cm x 22cm) with baking paper. Combine honey, sugar and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil and cook for 2 minutes or until syrup thickens slightly. Remove from heat. Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Pour over the hot syrup and stir to combine. Spoon into prepared pan and press firmly to make sure the mixture will stick together. I wet my fingers with a bit of cold water and press the top to get a smooth finish. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes or until golden. Cool and then refrigerate until well chilled and cut into 24 slices (about 2cm x 6cm).

Plastic Free July is here!!

I love this time of year!  I get to feel great about doing something for the planet and challenge myself to learn new things.

Have you joined Plastic Free July yet?

It really is very simple.  Just pledge to give up disposable plastic bags, water bottles, straws and take away coffee cups.  You can do it for a day, a week or the whole month.  If your a bit more along the plastic free journey you might consider giving up disposable plastic packaging too.

You probably don’t need to go out and buy anything as most of us have all the tools we need right now.  Just say no to straws when you order out, remember to take your reusable shopping and produce bags with you, and keep your BYO coffee cup nearby if you like a take away cuppa.

I’ve been doing Plastic Free July since 2013 and every year I stretch myself to reduce one more thing.  My family aren’t as wasteless as me but that doesn’t mean I can’t still give it a go.  I can make decisions that are good for me and encourage them to make changes but I never want them to feel pressured into something.  Plastic Free July isn’t just about waste, it’s also about enjoying life.  I love that because of this challenge I now know how to make my own yoghurt, bread, soft cheese, pasta, granola and a bunch of other things.  I love that I have found a community of others who are doing good things for the environment (rather than just talking about how bad things are getting).  I love that I can shop quickly and easily, just buy what I need and spend more time enjoying life rather than dealing with stuff.  I love all that I have gained by getting rid of the rubbish in my life.

Over the month of July we will be giving you lots of suggestions via Instagram and Facebook on simple changes that you can make, but we would love to hear from you.  What are your disposable plastic dilemmas?  What are your disposable plastic solutions?

To make it just a bit easier and give you a little incentive to try reducing your plastic packaging – how about a 5% discount on any items bought during July where you have refilled your own container!  As always you can drop off your containers and we will do your shopping for you if you prefer.  It doesn’t get much easier to do the right thing!!

I dream of a day when no one’s green bin is full to the brim on rubbish collection day!

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Zero Waste in Winter

Soups and stew season is my favourite and also the easiest time of year to minimise food waste!

Pretty much any combination of

Stock

Dried peas, beans or lentils

Mixed spices and seasonings

Plus tid bits of bones, leftover meat and dried grains

will make the most delicious soup for tonight and enough for lunches through the week.

And since you are able to take your own lunches to work in either a reusable container or food flask like the ones we sell at the store then your health will surely be at its best to ward off cold and flu season too!

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A couple of recipes that we love right now from Allrecipes.com.au ….

Greek Rosemary and Lentil Soup

Recipe by: Diana Moutsopoulos

 AllRecipes
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Easy

watch_red.gif Ready in 1 hour 20 minutes
Picture by: Diana Moutsopoulos
This is a healthy Greek soup called ‘fakes’ which is normally served drizzled with olive oil and a bit of red wine vinegar, which lifts the lentils a bit.

Ingredients

Serves4
  • 1 1/4 cups brown lentils
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 brown onion, chopped finely
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 litre water
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • red wine vinegar, to taste

Preparation method

Prep: 20 minutes |Cook: 1 hour

1. Place lentils in a large saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Simmer for 10 minutes and then drain.
2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, onion and carrot and cook, stirring, about 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Add the lentils, water, oregano, rosemary and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and s simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
3. Stir in tomato paste and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until the lentils have softened, stirring occasionally. Add additional water if the soup becomes too thick. Ladle into soup bowls, and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar to serve.

 

Vegetable and Split Pea Soup

Recipe by: DOGLOVER

 AllRecipes
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 Easy
watch_red.gif Ready in 2 hours 50 minutes
Picture by: kaitlin7
A great winter soup. Carrot, onion and celery is combined with two types of split peas, yellow and green, in this easy to make recipe.

Ingredients

Serves8
  • 1- 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups (3 – 4 medium onions), diced
  • 2 cups (6 – 8 medium carrots), diced
  • 2 cups (2 large stalks celery), diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 cup (185g) yellow split peas
  • 1 cup (185g) green split peas
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preparation method

Prep: 20 minutes |Cook: 2 hours 30 minutes

1. In a large stockpot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Cook onion, carrot, celery and garlic until onion is translucent. Stir in yellow and green split peas, stock and bay leaf. Season to taste, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 2 1/2 hours, stirring frequently.
2. Purée warm soup with a blender or food processor. Return to pot, heat through and serve.
Tip:

Make this soup vegan by using vegetable stock.

Secret Womens Business (aka Wasteless Panties)

Reusable Sanitary Products are Better for You, Your Wallet & the Earth

Have you heard about Juju menstrual cups and reusable menstrual “Moon Pads”?

To tell the truth when I first heard about them many years ago it wasn’t something I ever thought I would try.  But fortunately I did give it a go and now I would never go back!

The amount of waste created by this most regular and intimate of bodily functions is pretty staggering.  Plus it’s just simply gross!!

Reusable menstrual cups and reusable pads are not as messy or complicated as you are probably thinking plus:

  • Once you have made your initial purchase you will always have your supplies on hand each month – you’ll never be caught out again
  • No risk of toxic shock syndrome
  • Easy to use and maintain
  • You get to know your own cycle better which means that you can manage your own health better too
  • In summer the cloth pad will breath better, no more sweaty bits
  • You can wear either or both overnight without any leaks
  • Work just beautifully for sporty types

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Pads are pretty self explanatory I believe but menstrual cups are a new concept for many so here’s a video to help explain the concept…

Tips for beginners:

  • It will take you about 2 to 3 cycles to completely get the hang of a menstrual cup – just like it took a while to get the hang of tampons so many years ago.
  • We recommend that you start with inserting and cleaning in the shower the first few times since this is where you have plenty of room to find your most comfortable position, your muscles are relaxed and you can keep everything clean.
  • A rough guide to sizing is Model 1 for under 30 years old and Model 2 for those who are over 30 years old or have given birth (caesarean included).
  • How often you need to change the menstrual cup is different for everyone.  If you have a heavy flow then day 1 and 2 might have you changing it every 3 to 6 hours but later in your cycle you might not have to change it for 12 hours or more.  You will know you need to change the cup as you will begin to feel a heaviness but you’ll pick this up pretty quickly.
  • I like to use a cup and pad for the first day or two so that if I’m away from an easily accessed toilet then I won’t have to worry about any accidents.
  • When you are away from home you can remove and empty over a toilet then simply rinse out with your handy bottle of water.  No waste to dispose, so no-one has to know what you’re up to.
  • Clean the cup at the end of your cycle with a mild soap and maybe boil in water if you want to be extra sure that it stays healthy.  As for the pads just throw them in the washing machine with all your other clothes when you have finished with it.

If you have any questions or want to check out the demonstration models then just pop into the store and have a chat with one of the girls!


Gluten Free Baking Gift Pack Competition

Enter the draw to win

1 of 2 cooking gift packs

when you purchase any gluten free premix

(see the green flags) during April 2016

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Packs include:

1 x Quality cloth apron

1 x Ceramic mug

1 x Digital cooking timer

1 x Baking scrapper

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The winning entry will be announced May 1st via our website www.wastelesspantry.com.au

 

Pop your name and contact details in the jar to win!

 

And… if you would like to receive a FREE Gluten Free Baking ebook with 16 delicious cookie & cake recipes just let us know

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No Waste Home Bathroom – Eco Body Care Checklist

We talk often about refusing, reducing, reusing, recycling and rotting at Wasteless Pantry.

The easiest place to start your zero waste living journey is in the bathroom!

You really don’t need all those potions and harmful microbeads, just a few simple goodies will get you through and simplify your daily routine once and for all.

Given there is so much talk about the risks of chemicals in cosmetics, eco hair products, eco skin care and environmentally friendly soap options might be just the remedy you were looking for.

So what is in a zero waste bathroom?

  • Environmentally friendly, biodegradable shampoo and conditioner bought in your own reusable container
  • Eco soap free of palm oils such as the ones made by Corrynnes Natural Soaps
  • Bamboo hairbrush & toothbrush
  • Forest friendly toilet paper and tissues (if you don’t own a hanky)
  • Epsom salts bought in your own reusable container (because some times a relaxing bath is just what you need!)
  • Soap free eco bubble bath (because life is too short to argue over bath time with little ones) bought in your own reusable container

bathroom

What about deodorant, toothpaste, moisturiser, body scrubs and the like?

Each to their own on this one.  For me I’m happy with my DIY options…

DIY Deoderant

Mix together equal quantities of bicarb and coconut oil with essential oils of your preference (mine are lavender and chamomile)

DIY Toothpaste

Bicarb on its own [but I know others who swear by bicarb, coconut oil and peppermint oil]

* There is plenty of discussion out there about the pros and cons of fluoride and I am not an expert on this one at all so please seek info about this elsewhere on the internet 🙂

DIY Moisturiser

Coconut oil on its own [simple and effective!]

DIY Cleanser

Mix together 1 part bicarb & 2 parts coconut or olive oil

Lightly scrub body or face and then wash off with water

DIY Body Scrubs

Salt, sugar, quick oats and coffee grounds make great exfoliants and can be combined with oils and/or honey to make a wide variety of body scrubs that smell delicious!  Add in flavourings of your choice like cinnamon, vanilla extract, mint leaves, citrus oils or lavender flowers and you have something good enough to become a gift too!!  Play around and find your own favourite recipes, however as a rule of thumb you will need equal quantities of liquid to your dry goods.

If you are in the neighbourhood, then pop into the store and bring along your containers for refilling!

For a short time we are offering 20% off aluminium bottles with your first refill of our personal hygiene and home cleaning products.

And if you are not in the neighbourhood then make sure you leave a comment below letting us know what your bathroom must haves are!