We are all attempting to eat less meat. Ethically it is difficult to argue against this, the evidence is now rather overwhelming. But lately it appears more of a bandwagon jump than a serious conversation into conservation.
I do not wish us to stop using meat altogether as I am admittedly selfish and enjoy it far too much.
But we should go further and have more fun with what we do cook. The hunter gatherer style of food is endlessly entertaining and satisfying. It can also shine a light on how we might better eat.
The nose to tail theory stems from this and unfortunately is almost impossible in a town like Revelstoke. We do not receive animals whole for the butcher to ply his craft. This is because they cannot picture their customers chowing down on brawn and brain, shame. Meat eaters do not need to know where the meal came from anymore, yet that still stops them ordering my staple favourites of duck hearts on sourdough toast or an offal meatball wrapped in caul. These are some of the greatest dishes I know. I truly want everyone to be indulging in faggots and tongues over a long lunch.
But then we must realise this as a vegetarian and vegan issue too.
How many people really eat root to shoot? The tops of our carrots, radishes and beets are incredible but are often considered waste. The peels of potatoes, parsnips and yams are wonderful shredded into remoulade or deep fried into chips. Brassica stalks of broccoli, cauliflower and kale can be sliced finely and used in amazing soups, sauces and salads.
Even the water from cooking our legumes should be reused as stocks.
Food and water is something in abundance here, but not so in a few months. With so many people grumbling about the price and value of food in supermarkets we should better arm ourselves with the knowledge to get the most from them.
This is a large place with many a citizen claiming to be environmentally conscious and ‘woke’ in world issues. Our climate protests prove people are voting, with some of the best businesses even closing down for the protest. Changing how we use an ingredient is an easy small step towards that goal.
Let us make our feet and our bins lighter by using the entirety of something.
The new vogue should not be avoiding meat but instead the humble trash cooking.
Carrot top Pesto
1 bunch of carrot tops
1 clove of garlic
4 tbsp pine nuts
A handful of basil leaves
A handful of grated Parmesan or Nutritional yeast to keep it vegan
Salt and Pepper but of course
1 cup of a good oil
Bash, chop or blitz as you see fit and then slowly add oil until you are happy with your texture, some like it thick and rich others loose and dribbly. It surely depends on if your pairing with your gardens last tomatoes or a wonderful trout you caught on the weekend.