Use that skin in stocks, soups and more (Picture: Getty Images)
Whether your New Year’s Resolution is to save money, waste less or cook more, getting more bang for your bulb is a great place to start.
Most of us use the inside of a clove of garlic and bin the papery peel, assuming it’s only fit for the compost heap.
According to Alessandro, however, you can use this ‘fully edible’ skin in all sorts of ways, from making your own seasonings to adding a savoury hit to stock.
In one video, the foodie collects a large handful of garlic and onion skins (although you don’t have to use both). After washing the peels and tapping dry, he then places them on a tray and bakes for around five minutes at 160C.
Once they’re dry and crispy Alessandro blends the peels into a fine powder, adding salt, pepper, paprika and chilli powder for a spice blend he says is great on fries.
The chef also recommends getting creative and using different mixed Mediterranean herbs, a masala mix or chives and dill, as well as tasting the mix first ‘to get the best result’.
If that seems like too much effort for you, you can simply throw your extra garlic skins in with herbs, spices, veg, and bones leftover from meat. Simmer for a few hours, strain, and you’ve got yourself homemade stock that’s a perfect base for soups and stews. It can even be frozen.
For the garlic innards, Alessandro makes an infused oil and crispy garlic for sprinkling: all you need is a cup of chopped garlic and two cups of either avocado or vegetable oil (not olive oil as this has too low a smoke point).
Garlic powder is often made from the paper outer peel (Picture: Getty Images/Mint Images RF)
Place your oil into the pan, let it warm up, then add the garlic and fry until golden. Be careful not to burn the garlic, as this will also ruin the oil.
When this is done, drain the oil and store in a bottle, placing the garlic on top of a muslin to dry. The oil should last a few weeks (but can be frozen into ice cube trays for easy portioning and better longevity) while the garlic itself will last up to a year if stores in an airtight container.
Alessandro’s video has now been viewed over 3.1 million times, with fans praising his savvy techniques.
‘You’ve inspired me to try to be as zero waste as I can in my kitchen,’ said @lliiras79. ‘I love all the ideas you share!’
@flowerbootaego commented, ‘I can smell this video and it smells GOOD,’ while @jennyharouny added: ‘That’s actually amazing.’
Tasty, low waste, and keeps vampires away too. What’s not to love?
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Waste not, want not.