One of our core values at Pink Salt Cuisine is to operate as close to zero waste as possible. We limit the amount of packaging used when sourcing ingredients, we compost and recycle when we can, and we maximize the use of each ingredient.
One way to maximize the use of each ingredient is to plant scraps. Fruit and vegetable scraps represent a significant amount of waste while you cook, but there are quite a few that you can replant and breathe new life into (and have on hand for your next cooking adventure).
It takes a little bit of time, but you’ll have your own little garden before you know it!
When your recipe only calls for the green part of the scallions, don’t toss the white end with the roots. Stick it in a glass jar with a little water and the greens will grow back. You can just snip off what you need as you go. This also works with leeks. Source: Huffington Post
The next time you’re chopping a bunch of celery, save the root end! Place it in a shallow bowl of water, and after a few days, you should start to see roots and new leaves appear. As soon as you see these, you can plant the celery — leaving the leaves just above the soil. The plant will continue to grow, and soon you’ll have a whole new head of celery! Source:Huffington Post
To re-grow basil, you will need nothing more than the stem from which you plucked the fresh basil leaves. Set the stem in a glass (not bowl) of water, making sure that the water level stays below the leaf line. Put the glass in a bright, warm area, but keep it out of direct sunlight. The roots will grow within a few days, and your plant is ready to transplant once the roots have grown to a couple of inches in length. Source: Epic Gardening
Instead of defaulting to the compost, use carrot tops to grow healthy carrot greens. Place a carrot top or tops in a bowl, cut side down. Fill the bowl with about an inch of water so the top is halfway covered. Place the dish in a sunny windowsill and change the water every day.
The tops will eventually sprout shoots. When they do, plant the tops in soil, careful not to cover the shoots. Harvest the greens to taste. Source: The Food Revolution Network
P.S. If you’d like to learn about other fruits and vegetables you can replant, check out Epic Gardening’s post here, which includes a handy infographic on how to replant each item.