IKEA’s New Cookbook Puts Kitchen Scraps to Good Use With 50 Recipes From Top Chefs

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IKEA’s recent collaboration with 10 super chefs led to the creation of a new kind of scrapbook—one that contains recipes made from food scraps.

Utilizing the less-loved parts of produce or cheese, the SCRAPSBOOK curates 50 recipes for kitchen scraps that would otherwise be thrown away.

As much as Americans try to pull kale and broccoli into their diets, what happens to the greenish white stems? What about the leaves growing from our favorite carrots, turnips, and radishes? What about those banana peels and apple cores—that no one thinks to use for nutrition? Can one really make great recipes with them?

To answer, let’s listen to what Chef Christa Bruneau-Guenther from Winnipeg’s Feast Cafe Bistro had to say on behalf of her “Banana peel bacon” recipe served with wild rice flapjacks.

“Who knew you could eat a banana peel? Although it is thinner than bacon, it has a balance of sweet, smoky, salty, and heat, plus with the hint of banana it is oh so delicious!”

Banana flesh can also be used in pancakes, or frozen to use for smoothies or baking. Try the Banana Peel Chutney, on page 30, that Jason Sheardown serves with shrimp.

Adrian Forte from Ontario and David Gunawan from British Columbia turn radish leaves and kale stems into risotto and pesto, while Bruneau-Guenther contributes again to a pan-baked dish of squash and potato skins with maple syrup and cheese to help people get the most amount of fiber and nutrients out of their starches of choice.

“Scrapcooking is about finding the beautiful possibilities in that banana peel, radish top, or even the chicken bones you’re about to toss, and make the most of everything available to you,” explain the authors of the book in the foreword. “It’s little things like these that can add up to make a big difference.”

The epitome of this concept may be Adrian Forte, a celebrity chef heading up the Toronto-based Chef du Jour catering service, and his recipe “Clear-out-the-Crisper-Soup”—the ultimate in tasty recycling.

“I often save food scraps throughout the week — everything from chicken parts to vegetable trimmings. Usually, these discarded scraps end up in my weekly soup stock,” he writes as an intro.

The 111-page SCRAPSBOOK, downloadable in PDF here, also contains instructions for all kinds of different ways to reuse food scraps, beyond simply composting them—although it has instructions for starting a compost pile, too!

How to regrow produce from chopped ends
Using ground eggshells as a limescale cleaner
How to prepare cucumber leftovers as an insect repellent
Tips for how to store different produce that you wouldn’t expect
How to clean your finest skillets with leftover food instead of steel wool
It can be a great feeling to know that every taste inherent in a piece of food was turned into talent to make your life more nutritious and closer to Mother Earth.