Waste Not Want Not

Discovering ways to re-purpose discards, making items from scratch and being self-sufficient.

Don’t Throw Away Your Whey

Just as I promised, I’ve found several very good ideas for using the whey left from making cheese and yogurt.  Many recipes for homemade cheese and yogurt encourage pouring this useful by-product down the drain but having a miser mindset, I don’t throw anything away if it can be used.  I’m often accused of dividing leftover food and freezing it in ice trays.  Guilty as charged.

Substitute whey in any baking recipe that calls for water or milk.

  1. Use it in fresh yeast breads and rolls recipes
  2. Add it to your cornbread, pancakes, waffles, muffins, biscuit batters
  3. Use it to cook pasta, potatoes, oatmeal, or rice and whey will add extra flavor to the foods
  4. Add it to soups and stews
  5. Use it as an additive to fruit smoothies and shakes
  6. Mix a little in your dog’s food for extra nutrition
  7. Pour it over your compost
  8. Spray your lawn with whey

One of my favorite ideas for using leftover whey is to make ricotta cheese.  All the recipes I’ve found for this homemade yummy, call for at least one to two gallons of whey.  If you are a cheese or yogurt maker you may want to freeze your smaller batches of whey until you have a gallon and they try your hand at ricotta.



  1. You’ll need a colander lined with cheesecloth
  2. A large stock pot
  3. Candy thermometer
  4. Yield about 1 cup of fresh ricotta

Ingredients for Ricotta

  • 1 to 2 gallons fresh whey
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • A pinch of salt


  1. Heat your whey to 200°F, or a low boil
  2. Let the curds come together for 5 minutes or so, then drain the pot into your cloth-lined colander. The bulk of the whey should drain out within the first 5 minutes.
  3. When your ricotta has reached the desired balance of creaminess v. curdiness, scoop the cheese into a bowl and refrigerate until use.

Good luck! As soon as I have enough whey, I’m giving this a try.

Until next time!


OooWeee, Glazed Chicken Breast

Marmalade glazed chicken

Marmalade Glazed Chicken

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and though I was saving myself for tomorrow’s feast, I was hungry today.  Yep, today is Wednesday and I have spent the day buzzing around Christmas decorations wondering if decorating is worth it this year.  Living alone, I sometimes wonder if all that hullabaloo is worth it.  Since I haven’t decorated in a couple of years while my Mom was sick and consequently passed away, I find that maybe it’s time to shake off the doldrums and actually get in the spirit.

While eating wasn’t on my mind much of the day, I found that by 2:00 pm my tummy was speaking in low growls and prodding me to fill the void.  I had thawed half a chicken breast last night and was wondering how in the world I would make this preparation different from my daily intake of chicken.  Opening the refrigerator I spied a small jar of orange marmalade on the shelf with only a few tablespoons left in the bottom and it was sitting next to the French’s mustard bottle.  Humm, I wonder if that would create a good sweet and sour sauce for my chicken?  Well, I browned my chicken really well in a small non-stick skillet.  Into the marmalade jar I squirted a few squirts of yellow mustard and a few healthy shakes of ground red pepper.  When the chicken was almost cooked through, I coated it with my concoction.   When it started to get really brown, I added about three tablespoons of water and placed the lid on the pan and reduced the heat to medium.

It cooked for about fifteen minutes more and I then removed the lid.  I continued to cook it until the sauce became a thick and an almost transparent, beautiful deep orange glaze.  I continually basted the chicken breast until it was too thick to bother.   Boy was I surprised! The result was absolutely the most delicious lunch I’ve prepared for myself in a long, long time.  I enjoyed it so much that I felt compelled to share this with you all.  I feel sure that many, many people have already tried this but humor me please, I want to gloat on “my” creation for a while.

If you need a depart from the traditional Thanksgiving food that may last until the middle of December, please give this a try.  Since I’m not  recipe writer, I’ll leave it up to your taste buds to prepare it to your taste and in the quantity you need.  Mine was half a breast, about a quarter cup of marmalade, a few squirts of mustard and a healthy shake of ground red pepper.  Yum, Yum Yum!  It never fails, when I improvise with ingredients I have on hand, the results are almost always amazing.




Sweetened Condensed Milk Knock-off

Make Your Own and Save!!

This is a great tip for making your own sweetened condensed milk.  The price of this product has skyrocketed lately.  I use a lot of this during the holidays so having this DIY recipe is absolutely terriff!

Sweetened Condensed Milk
3/4 cup powdered milk
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup hot water
In small bowl combine the powdered milk and the sugar. Set aside Put hot water into blender. Start blender. With blender going pour in the powdered milk /sugar mixture. Blend until smooth.  This recipe equals one can of store bought condensed milk.