Here at The Avenue we are a no wastage cookery school, we like to use all ingredients to the fullest, to ensure maximum flavour and as little waste as possible. So to celebrate National Zero Waste Week we have some of Diana’s top tips to wasting less in the kitchen.
Tip 1: Leftover veg peel, cuttings and trimmings?
When you are preparing food, there is always masses of vegetable goodness which often ends up in the bin, for example, veg peelings, onion skins, carrot tops, leek leaves and much more. Though all of these don’t look or taste instantly appealing they are loaded with flavour and vitamins, so our number one top tip is to make a stock!
Load all your leftover trimmings into a large pan, top with water and boil away. You are now not only filling your house with a deliciously savoury aroma but also making a cracking stock which is perfect for risotto’s, pies and sauces.
Calling all Carnivores – do you have any leftover chicken carcasses/bones/meat (cooked or raw)? I bet you do if you are keen on a Sunday Roast Chicken! Well, we have a fool-proof chicken stock recipe on our blog which you can find by clicking here.
Tip 2: Making Roast or Mashed Potatoes?
Everyone on the planet likes Roast Tatties and Mash, right? But we bet everyone throws away all the delicious potato skins when they are finished peeling them. We have a delicious no wastage hack that will mean you can really get the most out of your spuds.
Once you have peeled your potatoes, cover the peelings in a little bit of extra virgin oil and some spices of your choice. We love cayenne, smoked paprika and lots of salt and pepper!
Lay them out on some baking parchment on a baking tray and cook at 200C for 25 minutes until deliciously crisp.
Hey presto you have a tray of fresh and delicious crisps.
Tip 3: Leftover egg custard mixture? (Egg, double cream, cheese etc)
Perhaps you made a little bit too much egg custard for your quiche; why not turn that into little eggy breakfast muffins? Simply add the filling of choice (we like fried onions and bacon) into a greased muffin tray, pour in your egg mixture and bake for 10-15 minutes at 180C and there you have a delicious on the go breakfast.
You could make a deliciously Creamy Pasta Sauce.
Fry off your bacon, and cook your fresh pasta until al dente. (Don’t know how to make pasta? You seriously need to come along to one of our Pasta Workshops – you will be amazed at how easy it is. Check out dates and information by clicking here).
Pour the leftover egg mixture onto your freshly cooked pasta and bacon and stir, allowing the heat from the pasta to cook the sauce. You will be left with a wonderfully creamy pasta, which no one would ever know was made with leftovers! Top with a fresh grating of parmesan, some rocket and cracked black pepper.
Tip 4: Leftover puff pastry?
Perhaps you have some pastry trimmings leftover? Let’s make some Cheese Straws!
Put all your leftover pastry together and roll out into a rectangle roughly the thickness of a £2 coin. Sprinkle with cheese, smoked paprika, salt and pepper.
Cut the pastry into long strips about 1-inch wide. Dimensions don’t really matter, but 10 inches is a great length for a cheese straw. You can then twist the strips if you fancy being fancy!
Egg wash your cheese twists and bake in the oven at 185C for around 15 minutes, or until deliciously golden brown.
Tip 5: Leftover fresh herbs?
Have you got lots of fresh herbs not looking so fresh? Well, let’s make some herb salt which you can use for months on end!
Take all the leaves off the stalks, (this works brilliantly with mint, coriander, parsley, thyme etc) and put the leaves into a Magimix with some Maldon salt (for every 5tsp of herb, use 1 tsp of salt).
Spread onto a baking sheet and bake at 110C for 1 hour or until the herbs are fully dried out.
Then, if you are ever cooking something which requires a herby flavour you can just add on your dried herb salt – e.g. it is brilliant over new potatoes.