Don’t Scrap Those Food Scraps!
Broccoli leaves, onion skins, orange peels, melon rinds, squash seeds — the list goes on and on. All of these food scraps are normally composted and thrown away in the garbage. But what if we told you that these scraps actually have dense nutritional value which are not only edible, but delicious?
We often throw away the leaves on broccoli, celery, and cauliflower. However, broccoli leaves are carotenoids-rich, meaning your body converts them into Vitamin A, which helps to prevent cancer. Leaves from celery hold five times the amount of calcium and magnesium than the actual stalks, and cauliflower leaves have higher fiber content than the actual florets. Cook these leaves as you would normally with the eaten parts to reap all of the nutritional benefits.
As for fruit skins, peels, and rinds, they’re actually more nutrient dense than their preferred sweet cores. Ensure you’ve properly scrubbed and cleaned the fruits’ skins first, and then whip them up in a smoothie with natural sweeteners like honey and agave to cut through the bitterness. Search for recipes online that show you how to reuse them in your favourite dishes, like a delicious melon rind soup.
Still not won over on eating food scraps? Don’t throw them out just quite yet, because many of them can be used as bird feed.
The next time you’re whipping up an omelette for breakfast, rinse and crush your eggshells. They provide calcium and grit to aid in birds’ digestion. Birds also love seeds, stale cereal, and oats. If you have a few apples and bananas that are too bruised for your liking, include those in your feeder as well. They also eat cooked bacon rinds, beef fat trimmings and bone marrow (note that they can’t digest raw meat).
Although birds have difficulty digesting raw vegetables, peas, sweet corn and leftover mashed potatoes are safe for them to consume. Just remember to remove the skins first, and chop up your food scraps small enough for them to eat.
And speaking of birds…
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