Salad for One to Save the Earth

When you’re too full to finish a meal, what do you do? If you’re like most of us,  the scraps on your plate often end up in the trash can. What seems routine and normal is actually part of a gianormous problem:  food waste. Estimates indicate Americans waste  between 10 to 15 % of the food they buy and more than half a pound of food per person is sent to the landfill everyday.  In Honor of Earth Day, April 22, the Recipe Redux is asking members to  show how they reduce food waste. Here’s the challenge: Whatever you would normally toss, use it up. Share tips for reducing food waste in meal planning, prep or using up scraps.

I consider myself reasonably thrifty when it comes to cutting food waste by shopping with a grocery list,  purchasing what I know I’ll  be able to use up in a timely manner, and trying to use the entire vegetable (even the part that usually gets tossed) as in my Cast Iron Skillet Roasted Radishes with Brown Butter. But here’s where I  fail; sending scraps of food left on my plate down the garbage disposal. Geez. Today I’m sharing  

I’ve posted on mindfulness before, here and here. It’s my preferred  way to self regulate intake, and I encourage my clients to learn this skill as a strategy to reduce weight or maintain a healthy weight.  I my humble opinion,  the mindfull approach is also  a way to fight food waste. Wastefulness is a subconscious act; being mindful will help you think before throwing food away.

On Easter  Sunday, and I had a little more honey ham on my plate than I was able to finish. Instead of putting it down the garbage disposal, I wrapped it in piece of foil and  and stored it in the meat drawer of my refrigerator. The next day I used  it in a  salad made with the few ingredients I had on hand: Romaine lettuce, radishes, and dried cranberries. A homemade honey mustard vinaigrette set off the taste of the ham in this simple salad.  The recipe is below if you would like to recreate it , but more importantly, when you’re too full to finish a  meal, don’t waste it! Put it in a resusable container in the refrigerator,  and eat it the next day. Even amounts that  aren’t enough for a meal can make terrific snacks.


Salad for One

by Diane Boyd

serves 1 Prep Time: 10 minutes


  • 2 cups fresh salad greens
  • 2 sliced radishes or any raw crunch vegetable
  • 1 tablespoon dried cranberries
  • 1-3 ounces cold leftover ham or other scraps of food leftover from a previous meal

for the Honey Mustard Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt,
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil


1. Arrange salad greens on plate and top with radishes, dried cranberries, and chopped ham.

2. Whisk together ingredients for Honey Mustard Vinaigrette and drizzle on top of salad. Toss and serve immediately.

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