Americans waste more than 20 pounds of food per person every month; if that doesn’t make you want to do your part to reduce the table scraps we send to the landfills, consider the amount of money you are literally throwing away every day. With some trimmings, rinds, peels, and stems, you can use yesterday’s scraps to enhance your next meal.“Nose-to-Tail” dining has been a growing trend among the restaurant elite for years now. Chefs have turned chicken liver into a mainstay on trendy menus, made short ribs a must-try, and revived sweetbreads from near menu extinction. This dining trend boasts sustainability as its main goal, but it’s not bad for the bottom line either.
Apply those same principles here to produce, and you have a DIY-ers cooking challenge dream. Before you compost or trash precious scraps, turn them into delicious additions to your next night’s dinner. Infuse vinegar or olive oil you already have in your pantry for gourmet salad dressings. Make soups, salads, smoothies, and more from the scraps that would normally meet their end in the trash can.
Much like chef Dan Barber of the farm-to-table mecca Blue Hill in New York and salad chain Sweetgreen teamed up to create the WastED Salad, you too can do your part to tackle food waste while making gourmet chef-approved food.
Whether you are looking to make your home a more sustainable one or cut back on your grocery bill, your daily meals will get a refreshing boost from yesterday’s table scraps.
Angela Carlos is the Cook Editor at The Daily Meal. Find her on Twitter and tweet @angelaccarlos.