We spend a lot of money and time with trips to the grocery store. Well, use scraps like those from your scallions or yogurt to produce more food without spending more money. Here’s a short list of kitchen staples that easily recycle themselves and how to get more food for your buck.
Of all the common vegetables and fruits you can regrow from scraps, pineapples are the easiest. The stem is hearty and can withstand even the blackest thumb can grow. Start by cutting or twist off the pineapple top. You want to peel off the bottom leaves until a good inch or so of the base is exposed. Any leaves sitting in water will cause your budding pineapple plant to rot. Set the base in a shallow bowl of water, you’ll want to keep it hydrated over the next three weeks as new roots form. Once it’s rooted, plant it in fertilized soil and watch it grow. It’ll be a good two years before it sprouts its own pineapple but the wait is worth it!
Break off a chunk of store-bought ginger and place it in soil. Any new buds should be facing up. The trick to jumpstarting your ginger is non-direct sunlight and moist soil. In no time, you’ll see new shoots sprouting up and roots forming under the soil. To continue the process, pull up the whole plant, cut off what you need from the ginger and replant.
Scallions are a never-ending source of food. The scallions you pick up at the grocery store come ready to plunk into water. Wen-Jay Ying of Local Roots walks us through this easy method of home-grown scallions.
All you need to make yogurt is yogurt. I know this sounds like a riddle, but it’s really kitchen magic. Start with a small amount of store-bought yogurt, and mix it with a milk of your choice like coconut, dairy or soy. Let it ferment overnight and the live culture in your store-bought yogurt will turn the milk into homemade yogurt. Repeat the cycle by reserving a little amount of the batch you made to make more yogurt. The Frugal Girl breaks down the steps so you can get to making your own in no time.
Similar to yogurt, sourdough needs a starter which is basically a live culture made of yeast and bacteria. To get your starter active, you want to regularly feed it water and flour, but you can also make it dormant in your fridge when you’re not baking regularly. And just like yogurt, you simply reserve some of your dough to make future loaves of sourdough. Kristen, a blogger at Smithspirations has a handy guide to caring for your sourdough starter and what to expect.
If you want to harvest your patch of potatoes or sweet potatoes, pick a potato with plenty of good formed eyes. Cut the taters into two to three inch pieces, while making sure each piece has a few eyes on it. Air dry the cut pieces for few days to reduce the moisture before planting them in soil. You want to make sure the eyes are facing up when you plant them. After your potatoes have sprouted roots and shoots, you’ll want to carefully replant them in nutrient-rich soil that has good drainage.
Have you tried any of these kitchen hacks? How are you using kitchen scraps? Tell us in the comments!