Want to improve your cooking and cut food waste? Make better use of your ice cube trays. (Note: This does require you to have enough space in your freezer for an extra ice cube tray.)
Say you bought some beautiful fresh thyme for a recipe, but you don’t need it all. Rinse it and pull the leaves off the stems. (You can compost the stems.) Then, mix the thyme leaves with some olive oil and pour it into the ice cube tray. (You don’t need to worry about filling the whole thing.) Put it into the freezer where it will freeze solid – without damaging the olive oil. Once it’s solid, you can store the cubes until you need them. Want to add flavor to beef soup? Toss in a cube. You can add the cube to anything that could use some thyme flavor. You can use this method with any herb. For larger leaves (e.g., basil), slice the leaves into small ribbons first. For something like mint that may not go as well with oil, freeze it in lemon or orange juice.
If you have a bit of stock or cooking juices left, pour it in a tray! Same with wine left in a bottle. Once frozen, they can be stored until you need a flavor boost.
One caution: don’t use this ice cube tray for regular ice cubes. The flavors will linger and you probably don’t want your scotch to taste like mint.