Save your Scraps (and Money) With These Recipes!
By Executive Chef, Rob Valencia and Shelley Clark
Like many New Yorkers, my building does not offer services to collect food scraps, so I usually end up carrying my scraps to work with me to be picked up. One day, I was looking at my compost and wondering how I could save 50% of this and use it as a recipe instead. From there I started playing around with the idea of “What can I make from this to stretch my dollar?”. So I started to play around with recipes.
Since sustainability is a hallmark of Great Performances, we approached Journalist, Tina Redwine, from News12 Connecticut about the possibility of doing a Chef’s Quick Tips Segment about how to reduce food waste by utilizing scraps and ingredients seemingly past their prime to create tasty dishes. She was intrigued, aware that her audience is concerned about the extraordinary amount of food wasted daily in America and interested in how to re-purpose ingredients that would normally be thrown away to lower their contribution to what is a major global problem with major environmental repercussions.
“What to do with the pulp left in the juicer after your morning dose of liquid nutrition”
2 cups Veggie and/or fruit pulp
½ cup Sesame Seeds
½ cup Flax Seeds
¼ tsp Salt
Crack of Fresh Black Pepper
Preheat oven to 200 degrees
Combine the pulp and the seeds in a food processor and puree until seeds are crushed and integrated into the pulp
Spread mixture on a silicone baking mat and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap
With rolling pin roll out to desired thickness
Remove plastic and place the cracker mixture on the silicone mat in the 200 degree oven to for an hour or until dry and crispy; the length of time it takes the mixture to get to that point will depend upon thickness.
“Utilizing ‘just off date’ dairy”
1 quart Milk
1 cup Macaroni
1 cup Cheese, whatever hard is in the fridge and shredded
Salt & Pepper to taste
This recipe is designed to use milk that has reached its sell-by date and which you don’t care to drink. If you do not have a full quart, add water to bring the volume up to 1 quart. It creates a lovely creamy texture and produces a very rich mac n’ cheese.
Combine milk and macaroni in a medium sauce pan and heat on medium high burner. Sir constantly as the milk reduces, which should take about 10 minutes. The stirring will promote the distribution of the starch from the macaroni into the milk which will help thickening process.
Once the macaroni is soft and tender, add the cheese and stir until it melts
Pour into a serving vessel and either eat immediately or hold in a casserole dish to be reheated
Ingredients (Vinegar base for pickling vegetable)
1 cup Water
¼ cup Rice Wine Vinegar
¼ cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tsp Kosher Salt
Directions (For Pickled Vegetables)
Rough chop whatever scraps of root vegetables you have on hand. Place in a mason jar.
Bring the pickling liquid to a boil and pour over the vegetables. Seal and store in the refrigerator for one day and up to one month.
Ingredients (For Vinaigrette)
1/4 cup Pickling Liquid
1 Lemon, juice and zest, minced
¼ cup Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Directions (For Vinaigrette)
Combine ingredients in a small bowl and whisk vigorously to blend.
Directions (For Salad Assembly)
Combine leaf and tops of root vegetables in a bowl or on plate and toss to mix them together. Add the pickled vegetables and dress with vinaigrette.
Use half the rotisserie chicken you’re not likely to eat and day old rice.
Before eating, cut rotisserie chicken into two portions. Trim meat from one portion, shred and keep in refrigerator until ready to use.
Directions For Stock
Place bones and skin and scrap into a pot of water with any scrap vegetables in the fridge
Bring to a boil and reduce by half
Remove the solids including all the bones from the liquid, but do not strain. You want all of the particles and char from the chicken.
Directions For “Dirty Rice”
Dump the cold (probably crunchy) rice in a lightly oiled pan and saute briefly
Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil
Add shredded vegetables (anything that you find in the fridge just chopped up and shredded) and the cold shredded chicken
Continue cooking over medium heat and stir until liquid evaporates. Fluff with a fort an garnish with celery leave and parsley.
“Using half your farmer’s market fruit you know you’ll never get around to eating”
1 Tbsp Corn Starch per one cup of fruit
1 Tbsp Water per one cup of fruit
1 tsp Brown Sugar per one cup fruit
1 Tbsp Butter per one cup of fruit
Store bought 3” round pie shells
Store bought cookie dough
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel (or not!) and chop half your fruit purchase and cut into small chunks
Mix equal parts of cornstarch and water according to number of cups of fruit
Sauté the fruit in butter (amount according of amount of fruit) with brown sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice
Add the corn starch mixture and cook until thickened
Pour onto a bowl or pan to cool. You can store the cooked fruit in containers and freeze if you would like.
Fill store bought pie shells (bake off if needed using the directions on the back of the package) with fruit
Cut raw store bought cookie dough into small chunks band top each pie with them. Bake at 350 degrees until the cookie is cooked through.
Allow to cool. You can wrap and freeze these pies.