Howdy Folks ❤
Today at work, my boss was emptying a bag of unidentifiable green chunks into a bowl, about to juice the chunks with a hodgepodge of other fruits and veggies. Obviously, being the curious human that I am, I inquired as to what the chunks were. Her response: “Well, actually, I am doing something you would do! They are the broccoli stalk bits that I don’t like to eat, so in an effort to not waste them, I chopped them up and brought them in to juice.”
Apparently, I am known as the resident garbage disposal; and you know what? I’m totally okay with that. Actually, I dig it. I am the girl at work who saves the pineapple rinds to juice because there is actually juice hidden in there; I save lemon peels and put them in my water because it does add a lemony flavor, and when I have to flush out the juicer after juicing a beet so I don’t taint the color of future juices… I drink the beet runoff. Yes, I can’t stand to waste water, either.
Truth be told, I absolutely hate wasting things in general, especially food. Hell, I up-cycle plastic protein scoops and turn them into vessels for sprouting seeds. It particularly tears at my heart every time I have to throw something edible away, knowing that there are multitudes of starving people scattered all over the globe; some even as close as downtown. I’ve been fortunate enough to grow up in a household where I am well fed, but that doesn’t mean I am oblivious to the needs of others. That’s partially why I bought a dehydrator: to salvage things that are about to go bad. It’s just who I am, and I’m proud of that. Waste not, want not, so the saying goes.
Anyway, going along with that theme, I came across this article a few weeks back, and I think it pertains to this post quite nicely. It’s in regards to making the most of certain fruits and vegetables, and I’ve copied the majority of the article below. I’m proud to say that I actually already do all of these things (except #5) because I’m about that life, but I bet some of these things are new for you, so read on!
1. Orange peels
The white, pithy flesh on the inside of orange peels is packed full of bioflavonoids which enhance your body’s utilization of the vitamin C in the orange. The bioflavinoids hesperidin and diosmin found in the orange pith may also help to heal varicose veins and improve the appearance of your skin. Simply scrape off the inner white part of the peel with your teeth.
2. Kiwi skin
Many people don’t know that the skin of a kiwi fruit is edible. Thinly slice the kiwi fruit and leave the skin on. The taste and texture complement one another nicely when prepared this way. If you peel off the skin and throw it away, you are missing out on added fiber, vitamin C, and even omega 3 fatty acids!
3. Beet greens
Beet roots are well known as a nutritional powerhouse but many people neglect the greens. Don’t trash the tops! They contain many vitamins and minerals including iron, potassium, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, iron vitamins A, C and K, folic acid and more. Beet greens make a delicious side dish lightly sautéed with some garlic and olive oil. You can also juice the stems and leaves.
4. Broccoli stems + leaves
When eating raw or steamed broccoli, many people prefer the florets to the stems and leaves, but the they can also be tasty when prepared in a way that works with their taste and texture. Use julienned stems in a slaw with cabbage and carrots or add sliced stems and leaves to a stir fry.
5. Veggie scraps
Don’t throw away the ends of carrots or celery, potato skins, onion and garlic skins, the stem of cauliflower or carrot tops! Throw them in a bag in the freezer and make a vegetable stock when the bag is full. Add to last night’s chicken carcass for an almost free chicken stock. Bonus tip: Freeze the stock in ice cube trays as a healthier alternative to bouillon cubes. Add a broth cube when cooking quinoa, rice or veggies for extra flavor and nutrition.
6. Juice Pulp
If you make your own fresh fruit and vegetable juice, keep the pulp. It adds bulk and nutritional fiber into recipes like veggie burgers, soups and sauces. You can also blend it into a smoothie, bake it into muffins and breads, or even dehydrate it into crackers!**
**One of my horses actually LOVES the juice pulp as it is, so that’s another method to not waste; just make sure you cut the rinds off prior to juicing. Adding the pulp to a compost pile outdoors is another way to really amp up your garden.
Have a fantastic rest of your “hump day”, my friends!