Of Rice and Food Wastage

Last time I remembered a second helping of rice was like...pfft..absolute nothing. A third helping then I was absolutely full and satisfied. So just one fine day, I decided to cut down on rice. To me, it is about less is more. You don't need much to be fully satisfied as long as you are enjoying your food and not just gulping it down, no matter how hungry you are. 

I know people completely cut off rice from their diet. But people like me just can't, haha. So the next best thing is to usually to cut down on rice intake which means no second helping and not to have much of it. But my mum always complain I can't finish my rice and that the rice will cry blah blah..and a lot of people can't afford rice..so you know, I had to finish the rice compared to the last time when I would proportion part of it and not eat them. So instead of wasting it, she will cut down on the rice but you know, mums are mums, especially if I don't eat during the day and merely snack on biscuits (which has been my habit recently), she will put a bit more. Also, if she cooks fried rice which is  basically cooked with a home made vegetable paste unlike the ones you get from the usual hawker or food centres, she won't be stingy with rice as she wants me to eat veggies.

Normally, I don't like to eat the various dishes cooked with rice such as nasi briyani and the ever popular chicken rice and for malays, the nasi padang which is rice with several spicy malay dishes. Okay, more precisely, not that I don't like them. But you know, I ate so much of them in the early days that to me, what works is just good ol' plain rice without the extra flavourings that usually come with chicken stock, ghee (butter) and what not.

I have eaten brown rice and you can say that I am one of those who wouldn't mind eating it coz I'm kinda used to eating wholemeal stuffs. So I don't see the big deal with the taste. But of course I understand where people come in from especially when they are so used to eating the more flavourful white rice.

At malay weddings, you can't escape from the nasi minyak which is basically something like this..

It is eaten with ayam masak merah (chicken cooked in chili red sauce) and acar (picked vegetables). Normally I like to eat them with loads of acar and brinjal slices from the dhal curry, minus the curry, heh..coz you know me and coconut milk don't mix.

I can say it's absolutely delish but it is cooked with ghee and chicken stock for that extra flavours which I basically don't need but I've never been to a malay wedding where they served white rice so you know, when you are hungry and then stuck with such food, ain't got a choice hun.

With so much talk about rice, actually I wanna talk about food wastage. You have no idea how much food we waste because we simply don't realize it. I wonder how buffet restaurants do with the leftovers. We are a food hub and we have restaurants that are open 24 hours and I don't get why people would wanna eat a full on meal after midnight, but whatever rocks their boat. 

So basically I feel sad whenever I see people leave so much food behind because either they think they took too much and then can't finish it or they are able to finish it but choose not to due to health reasons (a.k.a don't wanna put on weight). The thing is, take only what you can finish. Food may look extra appetizing when you are hungry but believe me, you don't need that much of helping. 

There are people out there who cannot afford such luxuries like us such as rice grains. They're expensive and I know because I buy small packs for my family. I don't buy the bigger packs because we don't eat rice every day and it's pretty sufficient for us. It's also to prevent bugs from paying a visit to the rice grains which usually happen when you keep the rice grains for too long.

I don't crave for such nice food all the time because to me, food is about comfort and you don't need expensive takeaways or dine in to enjoy food. Once in awhile it is okay to have such nice glorious food to celebrate an occasion or as a treat to spend some quality time with friends and family.

Before you waste food, think about this:

There are many people around the world, and even in developed countries like Singapore, who go to bed hungry. So don't simply waste food. It's also an economic waste because such wastage translates to money going down the drain which is better spent elsewhere like on people who are in need of such help to get even the most basic necessities.

So just my plea, as I've seen many times on how food is being wasted, to enjoy your food but without wasting by taking only what you need. If you know you can't finish, do share around with other people which is what I do too when out with friends and family and you can't really control the proportion served.

Are you going to make this change?

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