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Save your peelings for stock

Bitchin’ kitchen tip #2.

Like smiling dogs, the work of Studio Ghibli and warm socks, homemade vegan stock is one of life’s best comforts. It makes your kitchen smell amazing as it sits and bubbles away, it gives all your food an extra dimension of flavour, AND you get to use food you might otherwise throw away (if you don’t compost). You’re winning and you’re doing the planet a solid – what’s not to love?

Every time you make some food there’s bound to be a few offcuts or peelings. Think the root end of an onion, the base of celery, the peelings and tops from carrots, the stems from herbs. Blah blah. Rather than throwing them away, get a decent-sized resealable freezer bag, or a tub, and chuck all the offcuts in there and put it in the freezer.

Keep adding to it every time you have some leftovers. And if you’ve got some veg that looks past its best, or if you know you’re not going to use it before it goes off, then cut it up and throw it in too.

Once your stock pile is full, get it out the freezer and add it to a pan with enough water to cover everything, a bit of mustard, a few bay leaves and any dried herbs you have lying around. Bring to the boil and simmer for a good 45 minutes. Add in salt and pepper to taste, then drain the stock into a sealable container, using a sieve to catch all the solid bits.

Once it’s cooled, transfer the stock to the fridge where it will store for a week.

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