"Step back in time to any grandmother's kitchen and you would see many of the ideas in this book in action." Sherri Brooks Vinton, the author of
Put 'Em Up, is an "every last bite" fanatic who wants to discourage us--from wasting perfectly good food that could be recycled into yet another tasty meal.
Take giblets, for example. For some, giblets are the contents of a rather slimy bag inside the chicken or turkey that get thrown into the garbage bin without even being--yuck--looked at. They are the fowl innards: heart, kidneys, liver, gizzard, and neck. They're small and they all look strange...but they add flavor and nutrition. After all, chicken livers are a delicacy in themselves. Vinton gives a recipe for giblet gravy that reminds me of my mother's. You can cook the giblets (finely chopped) in the gravy and serve them like that, or strain them out after cooking for a smoother final product.
Europeans eat marrowbones, so why not we? With toast and a little salt. Use Halloween or the post-Halloween sales for an excuse to harvest pumpkin seeds. Pull them out of the pumpkin, rinse off the pulp, and roast whole with salt (crunchy), or follow Vinton's instructions for ferreting the seeds
(very small) out of the husks. Have you ever heard of garlic scapes? Those are the "green, snakelike stalks" that sprout of the garlic head. Cut them off the heads and saute them with pasta. They have a gentle garlic taste. Use your citrus peels for candies and extract. Eat carrot tops (okay, they are a little bitter, the author admits, but "in that sophisticated broccoli raab way”).
Using a handy illustration, Vinton offers ways to use every part of the beef. She states that she is "very pro-fat." Yay! Animal fat adds flavor. She tells you how to "render" fat, make cracklings, and prepare schmaltz. But she's not anti-veggie, far from it.
There is a recipe for Supergreen Smoothies, and plenty of ways to eat our spinach or other greens. And how about Pureed Squash Soup--doesn't that sound scrumptious? For sweet and sour preferences, Vinton's advice will help you stock your pantry with pungent pickles, while allowing you to consume honey, molasses, and syrup.
With metric conversion tables and a resource list and the end, Eat It Up! can become your perfect go-to for scrimping on cost but not on flavor or nutrition. And educational, too, for the young cooks in your kitchen. Try it! You’ll like it!