Save the Vegetable Scraps

Waste not, want not. Scraps cost you money, be wise and creative with them as they can be the building blocks of flavor.

Most of us look at carrot ends/peelings, celery pieces, onion tops or the first slice of a tomato as a scrap suitable for the garbage. I however, call them the building blocks of flavor, and when treated properly and managed effectively can save you money. Although some may look at it as just a carrot pealing, a piece of blemished celery or the fronds from a bulb of fennel, the fact remains that you probably paid a per pound price on many of these items and by throwing them away, you are in essence throwing money in the trash. Sure, it my not seem like a large stack of cash in the moment but hypothetically lets say your vegetables-purchased category average is 2.00 per pound and you save 5 lbs of scraps a day, that’s $3650.00 a year worth of product put back into your operation and menu. With that in mind – don’t scrap the scraps!

Vegetable Ends + Water + Herbs + 4 Hours of Simmering = Flavorful Vegetable Stock

A few stock tips, vegetable stock that is:

  • Avoid using bell pepper seeds as it will bitter your stock
  • Avoid using an abundance of red onion as it will add a purple tint to your stock
  • Use 5 parts water to 1 part vegetables to increase your finished yield
  • Low & Slow; low simmer for at least 4 hours will build more flavor
  • Contrarily, High & Fast; high heat and rapid boiling will only expedite reduction and not allow flavors the time needed to mingle and grow
  • Use herbs that are beginning to dry or are blemished
  • Roast your vegetables until caramelized with a bit of char to add a deep dark color and flavor intensification to your stock.

May your life and stomach always be full,
Chef Tim

Follow Chef Tim on Twitter @chefdifference

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