Lekker: Zero Food Waste Potato Skins

The Natural Gourmet Institute is a culinary school in NYC I've admired for a long time that focuses on a holistic all-encompassing approach to buying, preparing, and eating good food. I threw my hat into the ring for a marketing internship there this summer (though didn't snag it) and would love to attend one of their educational series if not for the thousand dollar price tag on each one.

However! Their wisdom is free on their Instagram account (and my own pearls on my Insta here), and recently they've been focused on promoting a "zero food waste" approach to cooking and eating. I find this kind of thinking particularly applicable having been raised by parents from Guatemala and South Africa where poverty is just about everywhere and food waste is damn near criminal. It's a great re-alignment of thinking for me and I welcome the opportunity to become as low impact as I can, with my tips and tricks passed along to you in further blog posts.

So! In this vein of making a real effort to make every last edible bit count, here's a way to spin up old potato peels into something delicious. This isn't an actual recipe but rather an idea for you the next time you're peeling potatoes for my Perfect Mashed Potatoes, perhaps to accompany these bangin' Slow Cooker Beef Short Ribs:

  • Wash the spuds and peel those skins off with a knife to get nice long curls
  • Toss with some olive oil, salt, pepper, and the freshly squeezed juice of half a lemon (the most important part to elevate it!) on a foil lined baking sheet.
  • Spread out into an even layer and bake at 350 degrees for 15-25 minutes, tossing once, until crispy and lightly golden brown. A perfect pre-dinner snack for the hungry chefs!

P.S. I did the same thing later with the discarded green tops from two bunches of scallions with a little olive oil, salt, pepper and a few smashed cloves of garlic in their skins. DELISH. My datemate's mom now calls me the Recycling Bin. :)

Posted on August 4, 2015 .