Cauliflower leaves have a cabbagey flavour, so are great steamed with butter, or in a slaw with a tangy dressing. Irish chef Tony Budde combines the leaves with pecorino and stock for
Use beetroot leaves as you would spinach – they only need a minute or two to wilt. Martha Stewart sautés them with garlic and tomato paste, while chef Marcus Samuelsson loves them fresh in a salad with blood oranges and
The crunchy stems of beetroot leaves are perfect for a quick pickle, but you can also do as Jamie Oliver does and blanch them before frying with garlic in olive oil, and finishing off with a dash of white
Broccoli stems make for fabulous, simple sides, whether thinly sliced and marinated in olive oil and lemon juice, or sliced thick and pan-fried until charred. New York chef Anne Burrell juliennes them to make a mayonnaise-laced slaw.
Slightly bitter with a grassy taste, carrot tops are great combined with parsley in salsa verde or pesto. Chef and founder of WastEd pop-up dinners Dan Barber uses it to make a marmalade.
(For three weeks in March last year, Dan Barber transformed one of his New York-based Blue Hill restaurants into a pop-up eatery called WastED, where he and big-wig contemporaries including Alain Ducasse and Grant Achatz took turns reimagining the bits and bobs usually tossed without a second thought- resulting in the now legendary Dumpster Dive Salad and veggie-pulp burger patties to name but a few.)
Local is lekker
Based in Cape Town, The Upcycle Project partners with restaurants and cafés to transform their leftover ingredients into delicious meals. A worthwhile initiative if ever there was one, it works like this: volunteer chefs from the Mother City come up with creative culinary solutions for kitchen scraps and ingredients that might have reached their sell-by date, but haven’t yet expired. The feasts are sold from pop-ups throughout the city on a pay-as-you-feel basis, the minimum being R5, making it affordable to everyone keen on a bit of tasty tuck. Most importantly, all the proceeds go to helping Cape Town’s homeless population. To find out how you can help, visit upcycleproject.co.za.