Eating well.
Saving dough.

Salvaged Scraps
Pumpkin Ginger Smoothie (made with pumpkin scrapings)

Pumpkin Ginger Smoothie (made with pumpkin scrapings)

Pumpkin cooking 101: first you scrape out the seeds and all the stringy stuff, right? Well…that’s what every recipe I have read says, with the exception of one. A few years back my sister gave me a book originally printed in 1833, The American Frugal Housewife.  I love reading old cookbooks; even if the recipes...
When good foods turn bad pt. 3: herbs & spices

When good foods turn bad pt. 3: herbs & spices

Herbs and spices are the flavor-packed secret weapons of every inventive cook. But when they lose their characteristic aromas, that dish you remembered tasting spectacular might turn out a bit blah. So here’s a few tips to help keep your aromatics aromatic just a little longer.   Dried Spices Dried spices never go bad, right?...
Sangria Jam

Sangria Jam

It is tricky trying to throw a fabulous party on a thrifty budget. Sangria stretches your most expensive ingredient (wine), but it does it in a sneaky, deliciously fruity way. Yes, sangria is cheaper than your average glass of wine. But it’s also festive, bright and delicious enough to avoid the bad rap that stretching...
Potato Skin Crisps

Potato Skin Crisps

As I have mentioned before, potato skins can be put to good use in making a flavorful batch of broth. But they are also quite tasty cooked all by themselves. Recently I made a huge batch of sunchoke soup (incidentally if you ever have the better part of an afternoon to kill and feel like...
Vanilla

Vanilla

Vanilla– how on earth can I pretend to write about kitchen economy and still write about vanilla?  Famously the second most expensive spice (first place goes to those electric little threads of saffron), vanilla is very expensive in all its forms (whole beans, paste, extract and powder.) It is possible to save money on costly...
Candied Citrus Peel

Candied Citrus Peel

I first candied citrus peels when I was living in Florence. In fact, I’m not sure that I had even heard of candied citrus peel before. I was amazed to find out that the pithy, spongy white part of the rind could be miraculously transformed into something far better than edible…. I would even say...
Cabbage Stems

Cabbage Stems

Cabbages are wonderful vegetables for the winter.They typically maintain a low price when the popular summer favorites (tomatoes, cucumbers) have either disappeared from the shelves or jumped in price (these out of season crops are shipped from farther away or grown in pricey greenhouses). So cabbage is a great vegetable for these long months after...
Cabbage Stem and Fennel Salad

Cabbage Stem and Fennel Salad

Ingredients: The stem from one small head of cabbage one small head of fennel half of an apple or pear the juice from one lemon salt olive oil Cut Veggies: Using a grater or a Japanese Mandolin, cut the cabbage stem into paper thin slices. Getting really thin sections of cabbage is a must for...
Storing and Drying Fresh Herbs

Storing and Drying Fresh Herbs

From the window of my “cozy” (read: tiny) Brooklyn apartment I often indulge in wistful daydreams about having a little herb garden. I have intermittently made forays into the world of potted windowsill herbs, with uneven results. So, someday I hope to find myself able to stroll out into the herb garden and pick whatever...
Bread Scraps

Bread Scraps

Leaving leftover bread out to stale is actually on of the best ways to preserve it. When my bread has past its prime (usually 5 days for a home-made sourdough loaf– breads that are not leavened with sourdough will stale more quickly) I cut off the crust and tear the remaining bread into pieces. Leave...
Vegetable Broth

Vegetable Broth

Often the trimmings from vegetables are removed because they have a different texture. Some of these trimmings are perfectly edible (potato and carrot peels) while others are too fibrous to eat by themselves (leek leaves and parmesan cheese rinds). Either way these scraps can be used to make a wholesome, tasty broth. Broth is made...
Onion Ends & How to Cut an Onion

Onion Ends & How to Cut an Onion

While I was writing a recipe for vegetable broth, I realized that it might be helpful to include instructions on cutting an onion. Cutting onions seems to cause a lot of undue strife. It’s not just the tears, it’s the geometry. The concentric rings don’t translate obviously into an even dice. If you cut an...