Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Cooking up the stock

It is amazing how delicious stock made from vegetable peelings can be! It is so easy and costs hardly anything at all to make.  I can't believe we've only just realised.

We've been cooking up our chicken carcasses for many years, usually adding a bit of onion or leek and some herbs to the pot. In an effort to reduce food waste and get more from our food generally we started to add bits of vegetable peel, carrot tops, the trimmings from leeks etc, which featured in my book, 101 Ways to Live Cleaner and Greener for Free. This makes a most delicious stock which we use as a base for making soups and risotto, both of which are great ways of making a cheap meal and using up leftovers as you can put anything in them really. (It's Tip 6 on page 23!)

But then we didn't have chicken for a while.  Gradually the stock in our tiny freezer diminished but the desire / need / longing for lovely warming home-made soup didn't.  That's when Mr Pitt had the idea of trying just the vegetable peel.

So out came an old ice cream tub and all week long we gathered up all the off cuts and peel from every meal we made. In went the carrot ends, the onion peel, potato peel, the floppy green ends off the leeks. A couple of apple cores went in and some orange peel and then into the stock pot to get boiled up just like we'd do with our chicken carcass, but without the chicken.

The vegetable peel stock in progress.

It works!  The ice cream tub is now fully and permanently employed. We've been collecting all our vegetable peelings, keeping them in the ice cream tub in the fridge so we can have a regular boil up even without the meat.

The compost heap doesn't seem to mind.  The peelings get there eventually, but we get more value from them first.

Bon appetit!

Risotto made with vegetable peel stock.

 I think the people at Part-time Carnivore, Come Veg With Me and Love Food Hate Waste,  will like love this, but I wonder what Nigella and Jamie would say?