From the family budget to incredible pickled snacks: One family’s affordable culinary journey with Good & Fugly

From the family budget to incredible pickled snacks: One family’s affordable culinary journey with Good & Fugly

Jul 09, 2023Jonathan Englert

We’re always keen to hear about how our super fans are using the Good & Fugly boxes. After all, our mission is to fight food waste while helping families indulge in the best produce, direct from Australian farms. 

Susan Whitby is one of our earliest customers, and the weekly large fruit & veg box has become a weekly delivery for the family ever since. “A friend first suggested Good & Fugly to me,” Susan tells us. “She knows I'm interested in health, society and lifestyle medicine and thought our values aligned. I also really liked that it was delivered and cost effective, which is important to me.”

One of the immediate (and perhaps surprising) benefits of the box was that it got Susan’s kids interested in seasonal produce, she says. Each week the family looks forward to finding out what’s in the box, and the change of seasons brings a particularly exciting change to flavours they’ll get to enjoy.

“Teaching kids about seasonal eating is actually pretty funny,” she says. “I find children are naturally curious about what's in season, how it grows and what dishes can be made from them. They are also stoked to see the next season's produce come in, especially spring and summer.”

Equally surprising was just how much the boxes helped with the family budget. It’s not just that they made it easier when it came time to cooking dinner, but the Whitby family have found that they’re now eating better at all times and making fewer trips to the supermarket. 

“Good & Fugly have helped our family budget more than I expected!” Susan says. “Having a fridge full of fresh produce means there is always plenty for the kids to eat, which reduces our need to keep store bought snacks in the pantry. 

“We also plan meals around what we have in the box, only going to the supermarket to grab the basics needed to complete a meal. Having a recipe included in the box is a great addition and if I can't make the exact recipe, it'll inspire some other meal.”

Getting creative with the fuglies

Another benefit to getting a Good & Fugly box is that there will usually be one of two unusual items in there, and produce that you wouldn’t necessarily buy yourself. With that included recipe, it’s possible to try new delights and really extend your palette and cooking range.

“Most weeks we end up with something we would never have thought of buying at the supermarket, which is fantastic!” Susan tells us. 

“I think it's so easy to get into a rut, buying the same things over and over. Not only is it more interesting but it's healthier with a wider variety of nutrients. We loved the weeks when we had heaps of pomegranates. That felt like a real treat. We Googled different recipes, both sweet and savoury, and gorged on them!”

For those that are concerned that some of the produce in a box might go to waste, there’s good news here, too – if you get a bit creative then you’ll be able to either use those ingredients that, at the end of the week, are slightly less fresh (they make excellent additions to smoothies, soups and stews), or you can do what the Whitbys do and find ways to continue to preserve and use the produce into the longer term.

“We use the produce in all kinds of ways,” Susan says. “One of the most delightful benefits is that we've started fermenting and pickling our excess vegetables. Eggplants were in abundance in 2022 so we pickled them with oil, lemon, pepper, and chilli, and have thoroughly enjoyed them on a charcuterie board. 

“This year cabbage has been plentiful, so we've been making ferments and adding in other ingredients from the boxes, such as ginger, beetroot and fennel.”

To wrap things up, we asked Susan what her favourite Good & Fugly recipe has been to date, and the winners was one of our favourites, too.

“The eggplant parmigiana was a real hit. It was cold and rainy when the box with the parmi recipe in it arrived,” she says. “We were stoked to have an excuse to make it!”

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