The nicest soup I’ve ever had? Sure!
You know, you guys who are rich throw away so much food! Food is one of the best things you’ve got down there, and you’re just using giant machines to toss it into big holes in the ground, or shipping it around on barges so it ends up in big holes in some other part of the world. Isn’t that perfectly insane? God doesn’t want you to waste all that food– God wants you to enjoy it.
So I have a little song. You can sing it every time you’re cooking something:
“Use it Twice, Use it Twice, Twice is Nice!”
Obviously if you’ve eaten something, you can’t use it a second time (unless you’re into really EXTREME composting, which some people do, and which is fine, but let’s be realistic). But, all the food you buy has parts of it that you can’t eat. You can’t eat packaging, sure, but you also don’t usually eat things like rinds, crusts, seeds, end parts and bones. So if you have a few carrot ends and some chicken bones, how can you use those again?
Here’s the best things to do:
1) Toss all of your veggie scraps into a baggie or container. I mean everything that isn’t spoiled or nasty: eggplant peelings, onion skins, spotty mushrooms, celery and carrot ends, potato peels, pepper seeds. After you’ve got a bag full that’s about the size of your head, toss the scraps into a pot full of water with some salt and pepper and a bay leaf and some rosemary. If you’ve got some time, crank the stove up to high, and the second you see a single bubble, turn it down to low and put a lid on it. Let it sit for three hours at least. It’s gonna start to smell really good. After three hours or so, scoop out the scraps and compost them. If you don’t have three hours, that’s fine. You have to work and your time is limited; you are likely not a professional, so who cares about ‘broth purity’ and whatnot? Just turn up the heat to a boil and simmer that sucker on medium for an hour, or until it tastes good.
Then, add some noodles or meats or whatever to the broth. Hell, add a can of tomato sauce and a can of white beans and a can of spinach. Or cut up some more fresh veggies, toss in what you like, and start a *new* bag of scraps with the leavings! You’ve just basically performed alchemy and turned dross material into golden soup.
2) Toss all of your meat scraps into a baggie or container, especially the bones. You can do this with raw bones, or even the rest of the chicken that’s been cooked but hasn’t been eaten– just tear it into a few pieces and put ’em in there. When you have a big bag of meat scraps, bones, etcetera (maybe you’re the kind of person who doesn’t like to eat fat for whatever reason. That’s fine, you can cut out the fat.), you can do things the slow way or the fast way.
The slow way is to get all of the bones together, cooked and/or raw, and put them in a baking pan. Turn on your oven to 200 degrees, and put the bones in there for a couple of hours, until they start to get nice and brown. The fast way is to not bother with this step.
Either way, toss everything into a pot full of water with some salt and pepper and a bay leaf and some rosemary. Then proceed as above!
The fun thing is, you can combine meat scraps and veggie scraps and make a soup out of both of them.
It’s the nicest soup you’ll ever have, because you made it, and it’ll taste good, and you didn’t waste all of that food.
3. Toss all of your fruit scraps into a baggie or container. Toss those scraps into the freezer, and keep adding to them. You can use these scraps for a lot of different things. If you, like me, enjoy some wine or other booze, you can warm up your wine and toss in some fruit scraps and some spices to ‘mull’ it. You can also use fruit scraps to make all kinds of cleaners, or potpourri, but this is about soup, so you can look into the cleaners and such yourself.
Point is, for some reason we think it’s “more convenient” to use easy stuff in packages. But really, it’s more sufficient to use as much as you can, and try to use everything twice. If nothing else, starting a compost pile with your scraps is really easy, and you can use that compost to feed some vegetables in a garden. The point I’m trying to make is that this kind of thing is easier to do than you think it is. And it’s even better to think of how this kind of thought process can apply to other aspects of your life. How can you use everything– not just food scraps, but EVERYTHING– Twice?
I’m telling you, God likes it when you don’t throw food into a giant hole in the ground that needs giant machines to maintain and just takes up space. Remember, God wants you to be happy, but can’t do every damned little thing for you. God’s given you all this great food, and when you don’t waste it, you’re really doing God a solid.
“Use it Twice, Use it Twice, Twice is Nice!”
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