|The Buffalo Hunt|
From Native Americans
|Beef bones being used for stock|
|Caviar with crème fraiche, lemon,|
and smoked salmon. By Julia at Avlxyz
There is very little, in truth, that needs to go to waste in your kitchen. Even with vegetables, many portions we discard out of hand can be saved and used in various manners. Onion skins are valuable for their color, both as a dye component but also as a way to darken a clear soup. Carrot peels and celery ends can go into stock. Onion roots? Stock. Broccoli stems? Soup. The list goes on and on.
The only reason that western culinary culture is so wasteful is because of availability. Why should I carefully cut all the usable red pepper flesh up when I can just go get another one out of the cooler? Why should I use the chicken's feet? There are 2,000 more chickens one phone call away. Why eat this strange organ meat when I can just go over to the supermarket and get another steak?
|A Victorian method of |
carving a Calf's Head
We have gotten to the point where we do not need to use every possible portion of our food, and that's unfortunately led to the death of some culinary traditions. Liver, kidneys, sweetbreads, head cheese, tripe, and so on and so forth are more and more seen as esoteric foods relegated to ethnic cuisines or strange cooking shows—or worse, "Fear Factor" competitions—rather than being accepted as delicious, edible, useful ways to get the most out of your animals.
Consider all the things we throw away in the kitchen, or are thrown away at a butcher's shop. Consider what isn't in the meat case. We do these things not because we have to, but because we choose to.
That's all I have for today. I've probably gone on for far too long, but alas—this is something near and dear to my heart. As I've said before, right outside the layer of butterfat.