Looking for ways to live well and spend less? Check out Thrift Culture Now where you will find proven money saving ideas and tips from others and see how they’re getting the best out of life. See how easy it is to save money at home when you learn ways to stick to a food budget, how to make your own natural home remedies, and money saving tips for transportation, cleaning, water, and electricity. In our efforts to revive practical skills, Thrift Culture Now also features articles and cooking classes that teach readers the skills they need to thrive.
One skill that can be applied easily, and have the greatest financial effect, is cooking. So, we’ve created cooking classes (you can view for free online) that teach cooking from scratch, food purchasing, butchery, canning, curing, etc. Of all the bills we pay, the grocery bill is the one we have the most control over and the one we may cut by the largest percentage. Check out our ongoing cooking classes and learn the time and money saving tips that will help you cook-up delicious, healthy, and food budget friendly meals, every day of the week. Actionable, money saving ideas, like the one below, are what Thrift Culture Now is all about.
Excalibur: The Mighty Spatula is a Great Thrifty Tool!
In the restaurant business where pennies are the profit margin, at some point the commercial kitchens around the world that succeed in controlling their food costs need to come to a place of acceptance, nay, reverence of this legendary tool. Horatio Spatula (no joke – this is the inventor’s name) himself could not have envisioned such a glorious future for his modest, albeit ingenious invention.
Around the house and for this article, we are referring to the common, ‘all-purpose’ spatula, with a semi-rigid, heat resistant blade. Commonly used for spreading, and mixing, this tool’s greatest contribution is its ability to save you money and keep you within your food budget. Using a spatula is one of the easiest money saving tips around.
Consider this: the average 500ml tub of yogurt costs around $3, has an interior surface area of about a half a square foot. How much yogurt is left behind when it’s empty? Since I go through this process at home once a week, I would confidently say a good 2floz. Its value: about 36 cents. Total annual value at 1 tub per week: $18.72.
Now, apply that figure to every tin, tub, jug, jar, bin, bucket, bottle or package that you purchase in a year and calculate the potential savings for yourself: the number of vessels containing liquid x $18.72 (obviously this number would vary by product and size of vessel, but appropriate for use here for argument’s sake!) and the number you come up with may astound you. When you waste food, it’s harder to stick to a food budget.
I do this dozens of times per day. You see, at the restaurant, we have ‘cold tables’ that keep our commonly used sauces in ‘inserts’ (usually 1Qt or 2Qt) that need to be changed daily – to keep things fresh and clean. We have about 100 of these inserts. We even train our cooks to ‘Spat-the-Spat;’ in effect using their finger to get what remains on the spatula after “spatting-out” an insert (it may sound funny, but money saving tips like this are no laughing matter, just great opportunities to save!). The amount saved by doing this could be calculated the same way: 100 containers a day x 36 cents, to me equates to $36 a day or $13,140 per year.
Who ever thought there would be so much lying in the bottom of that jar of jam or that can of tomato sauce? In my business, this is where I make my money and how a restaurant maintains a food budget. For a restaurant to maximize its profits and thrive, the spatula holds a place of honor. Perhaps there is some room in your kitchen for one?
Happy spatting, and be sure to thank Horatio as you count your savings.