Leftovers and Labels

When I cook, I cook with the intention of having left overs.  This usually allows me to use the food in some form for another meal, like lunch.  Sometimes if there isn’t enough of something like corn for even one serving it goes into a bag in the freezer that will eventually be made into soup.  I used to reuse all sorts of plastic containers for left overs.  I do still use zip bags for some things.  We’ve recently made the effort to clear out most of the plastic from our kitchen so most of our storage containers are now glass.  Sometimes I’ll use canning jars.  When we were using plastic containers for left overs it posed a problem.  For example…we eat a lot of yogurt and before I started making my own I saved the yogurt containers from the ones we bought.  Storing left overs in the yogurt containers can make it hard to locate the container that actually has yogurt in it.  Not to mention if you have several like containers with left overs, you may have to open a few before you find the mashed potatoes.  Now with the glass containers, I don’t have as much problem locating the green beans, but I still may have hubby asking “is this any good?” when he’s looking for a snack.

My solution here at home is to use freezer tape and a marker to write the contents and date on each container.  The organized people may already be doing this in some form at their home, but it took me some time to figure it out.

I was using masking tape (because it’s cheap), but now I’m using freezer tape.  Masking tape worked fine for containers in the fridge, but started peeling off containers, jars and bags in the freezer…and you end up playing that great freezer game “Guess what this is?”.  Since I try to reuse zip bags when I buy them (I like to buy the freezer bags for that reason) I don’t like to write directly on the bag.  I wrote whole wheat dough on a bag at one point and when I reused it for freezing banana halves it caused some confusion with hubby was making a smoothie.  “Didn’t you just freeze a bunch of bananas?  Where are they?”  Sigh.

So, how do you keep track of left overs in your fridge?