Posts tagged "expired food"

How can I reuse or recycle out of date chocolate?

We’ve had an email from Aimee:

Do you know if there is any use for out of date chocolate?

I guess it depends quite how out of date it is. Chocolate tends to have a “best before” date (rather than a “use by”) and it is often fine to eat for a good while after that. In my experience, cheap chocolate goes off – tastes funny and gets white spots – far quicker than better quality stuff, so if it was nice chocolate to start with, I would definitely try eating it.

If it is past the enjoyably-edible stage though, I’m not sure what I’d do with it. Chocolate-scented soaps or candles aren’t usually made with chocolate – they either use cocoa butter or a chocolate fragrance – so that’s not an option.

I personally wouldn’t want to compost it – it would compost but I’d worry about it attracting undesirable vermin to the heap in the meantime or would be snaffled by our dog who likes routing around in there (and smells delightful after doing so). Other people may compost it though – especially people with sealed bins and less greedy/nosey dogs.

Can you think of any reuses?

How can I reuse or recycle mouldy bread?

We’ve had an email from Milly:

I know about making breadcrumbs with stale bread but is there anything that can be done with bread that’s gone a bit mouldy? I don’t mean eat it of course but compost it?

Obviously the best thing to do is avoid it going mouldy in the first place – freeze it if you don’t have time to use it up or turn it into breadcrumbs there and then. But sometimes loaves have a tendency to turn in a blink of an eye so it’s harder to avoid.

Bread is one of those things that some people compost and others don’t. It will break down quite quickly but in an open, slow going compost heap, it might attract vermin to the pile even quicker. It’s also not going to add that much goodness to the heap either so you might decide it’s not worth the risk. But then what do you do with it instead?

Any suggestions? Do you compost bread?

(Photo of non-moldy bread because looking for a photo of moldy bread was making me too queasy!)