Welcome back to Boo … ahem, Bay Disposal, and Happy Halloween!
The holidays are almost upon us, and with them come some of the most delicious days of the year … and the greasiest! Turkey, bacon, chicken, all of it generates fat, oil, and grease which must be thrown out somehow. It’s tempting to pour that hot, greasy liquid down the sink, but don’t—there’s a better way.
Let’s get cookin’.
From the Frying Pan to the Fire
While it may seem like the perfect solution, pouring the fat from your pan of bacon down the sink will cause more problems than it will solve. Although it’s a liquid now, it will congeal as it cools to form a thick skin inside your pipes, eventually clogging them completely.
Where to Throw Away Grease
The congealing properties of grease can be a problem … as well as a solution. Pour the liquid into a glass jar, or something similarly heat-resistant. When the grease solidifies, throw the whole thing away.
A Bandaid on a Broken Leg
This method of disposal is fine for the heat of the moment, but long-term it poses several sustainability problems. The glass jar could be recycled, for example, if it weren’t being thrown into the regular trash.
So what’s the real answer?
- During colder months, scoop the congealed grease into the trash and save the jar (not advisable during warmer months as this method could attract animals).
- Vegetable oils can be spritzed onto weeds for a green lawn.
- Many types of oil can be recycled or reused, and some grease can be repurposed for cooking new meals.
- Check Pinterest and your old analog cookbooks for recipe ideas (and store that grease or oil in the fridge or freezer in the meantime).
- Some types of used vegetable oils are compostable, but only when done correctly. Do your research before employing this method of disposal.
- If you fry or cook meat a lot and generate substantial amounts of grease or cooking oil, research local restaurants, waste management companies, and government programs that accept such used substances for conversion to biodiesel.
- Don’t fry or cook meat. While it seems an extreme measure, this is truly the most failsafe, long term, and environmentally friendly solution. It may not be for everyone, but the positive impact of each vegetarian and vegan on our planet is immense. By not consuming meat products, they avoid the dilemma of disposing of the byproducts including bones, grease, fat, oil, and occasionally internal organs (none of which is compostable).
Choose your level, and get started saving the world! Every little bit counts, so that when added up it doesn’t seem so little anymore.
Happy Halloween & Happy (upcoming) Holidays!