Creative Ways to Reduce Food Waste: 3 Recipes from Deb Paquette

From Style Blueprint
By Elizabeth Fox

Throwing away food that can be used or composted is a real problem in Nashville.

Consider these facts: It is estimated that 25% of the contents of our landfill is food waste. In fact, 40% of all food produced in this country ends up at the dump.

Given that we’re quickly running out of space in our landfills, reducing the amount of food we waste seems like a really smart thing to do. Add to that all of the water, energy, chemicals, labor and other resources that are wasted producing food that’s thrown away, and the greenhouse gases produced by food decaying in landfills, and you have to ask yourself, What can I do about all that?

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Inspired by an article in the Wall Street Journal that featured Chef Kathie Buttons of Curate in Asheville about her ideas on how to re-purpose food, I called my buddy, Chef Deb Paquette with Etch and Etc, to inspire us with a few of her ideas on how to use food that is typically thrown away. I knew she would jump at the chance since she is a member of the Nashville Food Waste Initiative, as am I.

With all of the recent growth in Nashville, our city was picked by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) to be a pilot city to develop best practices on how a community can work together to reduce food waste. Fifty-five restaurants said “ yes” to Mayor Megan Barry’s invitation to join the Mayor’s Food Waste Challenge. If anyone can lead our city in making better use of our food, it’s our restaurants! And you couldn’t ask for a more inspiring leader than Deb Paquette.

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Jay Sheridan