One day recently I was running late cooking dinner and being faced with a pile of small carrots and potatoes, decided that I didn’t have time and couldn’t be bothered to peel them; so I just scrubbed them, chopped them up and threw them in the oven with my roast along with a little oil spray and seasoning.
I always used to pull faces when my mum served new potatoes which still had their skins on but now I quite often put small potatoes in the oven and have mini baked potatoes.
I remembered watching one of the TV chefs just washing carrots and cooking them and it began to register a bit more with me how much of the flavor and nutrients we are throwing away with the peelings.
Not only this: but trying to avoid wasting any food and get the best value from my shopping I began to realize that I was effectively throwing away money into the compost bin.
As I often end up with small potatoes and carrots, by the time I’ve peeled them there is not much left and end up throwing away half of the vegetables.
So now my vegetable peeler is becoming redundant and my trusty vegetable scrubber is being well used.
Carrots can be scrubbed, topped & tailed and roasted whole or chopped to size and you actually don’t notice the skin as it is much thinner than potatoes, plus you get a lot more flavor.
Potatoes (especially small ones) can simply be scrubbed and cooked whole or chopped to size. I even make “mash” but instead of trying to get a nice smooth creamy consistency; try just breaking it up roughly (crushed) and putting in the oven for a while. The bits of skin go crispy and it has an better flavor and texture. With potatoes though this will work better with some varieties than others.
As yet I have not tried this on other vegetables as some I think would not be so tasty but parsnips will work too.
If you are one who “must” peel; then do not fear: there are many uses for vegetable peelings before they go on the compost bin.
A brief internet search produced many ideas including making healthy crisps (spray with a little oil, season, spread on a tray and bake); making vegetable stock, to various cleaning and beauty uses.
So: love your peelings (or not) and save a little more money and get some more nutrients along the way