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8 ingredients you usually throw out but shouldn’t

It’s no more “off with your skin and out you go!”

Your relationship with vegetable waste is about to deepen.

Vegetable stock is the ever versatile ingredient that will add depth to your soups and sauces. And you can easily make your own.

Collect vegetable trimmings into a container in your fridge and you’ll soon have enough to make a pot of stock.

For oil-free cooking, vegetable stock replaces oil. Crazy I know, but there are a whole lot of plant-based folk truly improving their coronary health by doing so.

But which vegetables shall I stock pile (oh the pun!)?

Here are my main contenders:

  • Garlic paper and those tiny cloves that are too hard to peel
  • Onion skin and ends
  • Leek skins and trimmings
  • Celery leaves and bulb off-cuts
  • Carrots peelings and ends
  • Potato peelings
  • Corn cobs
  • Herb stalks

My rule of thumb is: if a vegetable tastes bad when overcooked – think Brussel sprouts, broccoli, red peppers, cauliflower – then don’t include it.

Place your vege scraps in a pot and cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer until the veges are cooked. Strain and add salt and pepper to taste.

The stock can be frozen in bulk or in ice-cube trays.

Real world alert! There are times when I don’t have my own stock at the ready and store bought stocks/powders are good to have on hand. But watch out for high salt content, msg and anything you can’t pronounce or recognise as food, because it probably isn’t food.

When in doubt, use water.

With your big pot of stock now underway, here are some delicious soup/stew recipes for it to go in.

Not your average lentil stew

Spicey West African peanut stew

Simple summer soup

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