Dear Chefs, We Want To Talk About Root to Stem!
We rely on your talents to introduce us to perfected classics, bizarre pairings, and unique fusions. You’ve taught us that farm to table is truly delicious and have given us countless culinary tours by sea and by land. You’ve taught us sustainability, and you’ve shown us the way to indulging in cheese without cheese, and meat without meat. You’ve become amateur scientists and introduced us to emulsification, spherification and molecular gastronomy. You’ve given us ambition to keep an open mind when it comes to carnivorous eats and showed us the concept of nose-to-tail dining. For that, we are thankful.
Now that we’ve fed your famous egos we have a question –
Why haven’t you shown us the ways of “Root-to-Stem” Dining?
Perhaps you’ve mentioned it, but we’re not seeing the push. There’s a ton of talk about sustainability. We hear all about the huge amount of food that is wasted. There are many organizations documenting how much food ends up in the trash. But in spite of all that, there isn’t a ton of buzz around this topic, and there should be. (Anthony Bourdain, thank you for “WASTED”)
Here are the facts:
- In the United States alone, Americans waste is nearly 30 to 40 percent of the entire U.S. food supply.
- While food waste presents obvious moral and economic dilemmas, it also creates environmental problems. As food decomposes in landfills it releases methane, a greenhouse gas that is 27 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
- According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), annually around the world 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted. At the same time about one in nine (about 795 million) people do not have enough food.
There are multiple organizations that fight for the cause, but we need to be doing a lot more. We need this to trend, and we need you to speak up and use your voices, TV time, radio time, whatever you have to do to spread the word. Add a special to your menu and have the proceeds go to an organization. Share the recipe, Chef. Educate us.
Vegans, where art thou? Give us more recipes like CARROT TOP PESTO. It’s frustrating that we’re not enthusiastic about pushing the limits of your ingredients. Eatthis.com reported that one of the top food trends for 2018 is eating parts of ingredients that would otherwise be wasted or composted, like carrot tops (recipe above).
The Root-to-Stem dining movement can be about creative philanthropy. It’s a movement that hasn’t had an opportunity to shine, and it’s one that could potentially feed a lot of hungry people. Not only that, but it can help you get more bang for your buck from the ingredients you buy on a daily basis. We’re hoping to see more chefs put roots and stems in the spotlight of their culinary creations, and take us on yet another flavorful adventure.
Tag your recipes, spread the knowledge. #ROOT2STEM