Fight food waste with these 11 ways to use leftover greens before they spoil

September 19, 2018 by  
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While they are chock-full of nutrients, greens such as spinach, kale, chard and romaine typically do not make for good leftovers. Luckily, there are plenty of uses for this tasty produce — even if it is soggy and nearly bad — that won’t make you feel like you’ve wasted money or contributed to the growing food waste crisis. Here are 11 different ways you can use leftover greens before they spoil. Sautéed Greens Certain types of greens, like arugula, kale , chard and spinach, are ideal for adding to a stir-fry or sautéing. Add these greens with shallots, peppers and garlic, and sauté them with a bit of olive oil. If you are making a traditional stir-fry, the ribs of romaine and iceberg lettuce are great for adding a crispy element to the dish. Kale Pesto Who knew kale could be incorporated into a spaghetti dish? Start by making a pesto with kale with a food processor. Then, boil some spaghetti noodles and combine them with the pesto. Add a few sun-dried tomatoes to the mix and top everything off with some goat or vegan cheese. Once you have mastered making kale pesto, you can use it in a number of different dishes, including raviolis and fish, such as tilapia. Lettuce Soup It might not sound good, but leftover greens actually make a great soup . You can make a delicious soup out of an assortment of leftover greens, including Boston, romaine, butter, Bibb and iceberg lettuces. You can also play with a variety of spices, like thyme, garlic and tarragon, until you find a flavor combination you like. Add in potato for a heartier meal. Lettuce Cups and Wraps You can put just about anything that you would put on a sandwich in a lettuce wrap, and it will taste good. If you are looking for something new, try wrapping a mixture of rice, spicy peppers and other veggies and proteins of your choice. Like wraps, lettuce cups are a great way to use leftover greens before they spoil. Romaine lettuce and iceberg are better for cups, because they have large leaves and are a little sturdier than their counterparts. There is an assortment of lettuce cup recipes on the internet, but our favorite combines pine nuts, tofu (or chicken, if you prefer) and peppers to create a tasty treat. Green Smoothies One of the quickest ways to use leftover greens is to incorporate them into a smoothie. Greens make excellent smoothies that are both tasty and nutritious. Add a bit of fruit plus ginger for extra flavor. You can also try your hand at making a detox smoothie. For this drink, use leftover kale, apples, ginger and lemon. Start by slicing six apples. Juice three of them, and add the juice to your blender. Then toss in the chopped kale, lemon and ginger. Once everything is mixed in, add the rest of the apple slices and blend. One tip for this recipe is to use apples that are crisp, which will help give the smoothie a good consistency. But if you are trying to use up nearly-expired apples, those will work fine, too. Mac & Cheese Leftover kale actually makes great mac and cheese and can help infuse nutrients into the dish. Just cook the dish as you normally would (we recommend homemade, not boxed!), and combine the chopped kale at the very end as you are mixing everything together. Place in the oven to soften the kale and you are good to go. If you prefer spinach, it also makes a great addition to this classic comfort dish . Rice With Greens Mixing rice, including fried rice, with greens is a great way to make a traditional dish healthier. Start by cooking the rice as you normally would. Mix in a cup or more of chopped greens and your preferred spices. Cook until the kale is soft and serve hot. Coleslaw Leftover greens are great for making a quick coleslaw. Hardier greens, such as kale, mustard, chard or turnip tops, are more ideal for coleslaw, because they generally stay fresher longer. If you notice some yellowing leaves, simply cut off these portions and cut the rest into small strips. Add a vinaigrette to the mixture and the result is a fresh slaw that is sure to please. Grilled Lettuce Grilling lettuce is a great way to use it up before it wilts away. Start by cutting lettuce into wedges and coat with olive oil, salt and garlic. The sugars in the lettuce, especially if you use iceberg or romaine, will caramelize in the cooking process. Once the greens are fully cooked, sprinkle them with some cheese of your choice and enjoy. Spinach Yogurt Dip Spinach and kale can be combined to create an amazing yogurt dip. Gather Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, honey, kale, spinach, green onions, red pepper, carrots, garlic and some paprika. The key to this dish is to make sure all of the ingredients are finely chopped so that they combine well with the yogurt. You can also add artichoke hearts or water chestnuts for a little more variety. Serve this dish with veggies or chips. Braised Lettuce Did you know that you can braise lettuce? Well, you can, and it is pretty delicious to boot. You can try different recipes with this dish, but braising lettuce in coconut milk and then adding some ginger, black pepper and garlic makes for an amazing appetizer. To braise lettuce, start by chopping it up and sauté it until the leaves are slightly brown. Then add some vegetable broth and bring everything to a boil. Cover and heat for around 15 minutes to finish the braise. Images via Chiara Conti , Tim Sackton , Alice Pasqual , Stu Spivack , Vegan Feast Catering , Kimberly Nanney , Jodi Michelle , Zachary Collier , Gloria Cabada-Leman and Shutterstock

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Fight food waste with these 11 ways to use leftover greens before they spoil

‘The Great British Bake Off’ is back this time, with a vegan week

August 27, 2018 by  
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The Great British Bake Off usually features an assortment of bread, dairy and meat products slathered in more butter and cream than imaginable. But this year, the British cooking competition will feature a special vegan week to help promote healthier, more sustainable eating in what producers feel is a move in the right direction. The show, which kicks off its ninth season on August 28, will bring 12 amateurs to the kitchen to see who can bake the best traditional meals and desserts . The contestants this year include a nuclear scientist, a banker, a product demonstrator, a prosthetic technician and a research scientist, just to name a few. Previous seasons have featured a weekly theme, including cake, bread and biscuit weeks. This season, however, will include a vegan week and a Danish week, neither of which has never been done before. “We wanted something different and something to represent what is happening in this country,” Paul Hollywood, one of the judges on the show, explained. A  recent survey suggests upward of 3.5 million people in the U.K. are now vegan. Hollywood and his new co-star Prue Leith added that they think fans will learn a lot about watching vegan week on the  The Great British Bake Off . In fact, both judges admitted they learned many fascinating things during the vegan week that could very well change people’s lives. Although the show is introducing new weeks and challenges, the judging process will remain the same — the judges won’t accept a dish that is “okay for vegan, it’s got to taste good, period,” Hollywood said. The Great British Bake Off was originally on the BBC before being bought by Channel 4, which has produced the show for the past two seasons. The goal of the series, according to Hollywood, is to encourage the audience to learn how to bake and enjoy the process of baking. Now, those at home will have an opportunity to learn how to bake delicious treats within vegan guidelines. To that end, The Great British Bake Off presents a mixture of challenges, so that viewers don’t feel too overwhelmed when they try the recipes out in their own kitchens. + The Great British Bake Off Via The Guardian Images via VeganBaking.net

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‘The Great British Bake Off’ is back this time, with a vegan week

This eco-friendly prefab home was built in just 28 days

August 27, 2018 by  
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São Paulo-based engineering and construction company SysHaus and Brazilian architecture firm Studio Arthur Casas have designed and installed the first-ever SysHaus, a modular family residence that features a wide array of eco-friendly features. Prefabricated from 100 percent  recyclable materials , the São Paulo house was constructed in just 28 days using proprietary technology that the designers say “doesn’t generate excess materials or utilize water.” The energy-saving elements of the house include a rainwater catchment and reuse system, solar roof tiles, a green roof and even a biodigester to turn organic waste into gas for the fireplace and kitchen. The chic and contemporary design of the SysHaus spans nearly 2,200 square feet. Since the single-family home was designed to embrace environmentally friendly principles both inside and out, the design and construction team enlisted the help of landscape designer Renata Tilli to direct the planting plans of the garden spaces. The lush landscape includes bamboo and grass, fast growing plants that require little maintenance and water. In contrast, Tilli also specified the inclusion of several olive trees, chosen for their slow-growing characteristics in a nod to the home’s longevity. Related: Beautiful cabin pops up in ten days with minimal landscape disturbance Architect Arthur Casas directed not only the architectural design of SysHaus, but also determined the interior furnishings and finishes of the prefab home. The cohesive design emphasizes a strong connection with nature thanks to its natural materials palette and large sliding doors that blur the boundary between the interior and exterior, which continues on to the outdoor landscaping and living spaces. The home features a sense of fluidity in the interior spaces, which feel interconnected. “Nature and design integration are key to this Brazilian Startup SysHaus’ and Studio Arthur Casas’ project,” the team said in a press release. “Using modular system manufacturing, project needs and specifications made its parts in a very efficient and functional mode.” + Studio Arthur Casas Images via Studio Arthur Casas

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This eco-friendly prefab home was built in just 28 days

Vegan Dining Trend Inspires Fresh Vocational Program

July 31, 2018 by  
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Some students training for work in the food industry want … The post Vegan Dining Trend Inspires Fresh Vocational Program appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Asheville, North Carolina proclaims 7-Day Vegan Challenge

June 5, 2018 by  
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Asheville, North Carolina has announced a week-long vegan challenge. The City of Asheville 7-Day Vegan Challenge invites residents and businesses to eat plant-based foods between June 4 and 10 “to promote good health, animal justice, social justice, environmental justice, and climate justice,” according to a proclamation signed by mayor Esther Manheimer. The city of Asheville describes the effort as the “first ever ‘city-proclaimed’ vegan challenge in the US.” A no-kill animal rescue organization, Brother Wolf Animal Rescue , is spearheading the movement to try out vegan living for a week in Asheville. They’ve made it easier for people to test out veganism by working with Mission Health Weight Management to create a guide with a seven-day meal plan , grocery store shopping list, and tips for going vegan. Sample meals include dishes like a Quinoa Green Goddess Bowl, Carrot Cake Overnight Oats, or Veggie Fajitas. Related: Vegan diets deliver more environmental benefits than sustainable dairy or meat Brother Wolf Animal Rescue is presenting the Asheville VeganFest on June 8 to 10, so the seven-day vegan challenge leads up to the festival. The event’s theme is “to bring awareness to the impacts of global animal agriculture on mass species extinction , climate change , and human health,” according to the challenge’s website, and speakers will discuss “how the transition to the vegan diet is the single most effective change we can make as individuals to help mitigate these crises.” The rescue shelter hopes other cities get involved, too — they’re offering a 7-Day Challenge Start-up Kit including a sample press release, marketing plan, and proclamation; a custom challenge website they’ve created; a guide to securing partnerships and sponsorship; and access to a training webinar. If your city is interested, you can find out more on the 7-Day Vegan Challenge website . + City of Asheville 7-Day Vegan Challenge + City of Asheville Proclamation Images via Depositphotos

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New SubCAS technology enables scientists to better study deep-sea ecosystems

June 5, 2018 by  
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Scientists at the California Academy of Sciences have created a new device that can capture and transport deep-sea  creatures to the  ocean ‘s surface without harming them, allowing scientists to better study the deep sea and potentially discover new species. The Submersible Chamber for Ascending Specimens, or SubCAS, works by first capturing wildlife within a small collecting jar. Once the SubCAS and its diver have ascended to approximately 200 feet below the surface, the jar is then moved into a larger chamber, which is sealed after an air bubble is also inserted. This air bubble expands as the pressure drops, which keeps the pressure within the jar at a constant level consistent with that experienced in the deep-sea creatures’ habitats. Until recently, technological challenges limited our knowledge of the mesophotic, or “middle light,” zone. The mesophotic ecosystems begin to exist roughly at the depth beyond which traditional diving technology ceased to effectively protect divers. On the other hand, this zone is also too shallow to justify the use of technology typically used for deep sea exploration. In the past decade, diving technology has improved, and with it our understanding of this unique part of the ocean. Related: Researchers discover a completely new ocean zone swimming with new species “When we started doing these deep dives, seeing whole ecosystems nobody’s ever seen… I wanted to bring those to the public floor,” Senior Director of the California Academy of Sciences’ Steinhart Aquarium and co-inventor of the SubCAS Bart Shepherd told Earther . The team has successfully brought 89 percent of captured mesophotic animals to the surface, while 143 of these creatures have been transported from locations all over the world to the Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco , where many of them are on display in the Twilight Zone: Deep Reefs Revealed exhibit. “We’re showing a million-plus people a year these things nobody else will have the opportunity to see, and [using] that as a way to have a [conversation] about coral reef decline,” said Shepherd. The team is currently gearing up for a 2019 mesophotic expedition in the Indian Ocean. “There’s really nobody that’s done deep exploration diving on reefs in the Indian Ocean,” said Shepard. “We think we’re gonna find a ton of new species.” Via Earther Images via California Academy of Sciences

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Vegan diets deliver more environmental benefits than sustainable dairy or meat

June 1, 2018 by  
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Want to lower your environmental impact? Go vegan . That’s one idea researchers uncovered in what The Guardian described as the most comprehensive analysis thus far of farming’s impact on Earth. University of Oxford scientist Joseph Poore, who led the study, told The Guardian, “A vegan diet is probably the single biggest way to reduce your impact on planet Earth, not just greenhouse gases , but global acidification, eutrophication, land use, and water use. It is far bigger than cutting down on your flights or buying an electric car .” “Animal product-free diets…deliver greater environmental benefits than purchasing sustainable meat or dairy ,” according to Oxford’s statement on the study published today in the journal Science . Scientist Thomas Nemecek of Swiss agricultural research group Agroscope joined Poore to create a database of close to 40,000 farms in 119 countries to assess environmental impacts of 40 major foods representing 90 percent of what we eat. Related: Here’s what could happen if America went 100% vegan They discovered that meat and dairy generate 60 percent of greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and use up 83 percent of farmland — but offer just 37 percent of protein and 18 percent of calories, The Guardian reported. Without dairy and meat consumption, global farmland use could be slashed by over 75 percent. The scientists also uncovered variability in producing the same food: for example, high-impact beef producers raising beef cattle on deforested land use 50 times more land and create 12 times more greenhouse gases than low-impact beef producers raising cows on natural pastures. But there’s still a sharp comparison between beef and plant protein like peas: even low-impact beef generates six times more greenhouse gases and uses 36 times more land. You might think grass-fed beef has a low environmental impact, but the researchers discovered the product’s impact was still higher than that of plant-based foods. Poore told The Guardian, “Converting grass into [meat] is like converting coal to energy. It comes with an immense cost in emissions.” Many food experts praised the study. The University of Edinburgh’s Peter Alexander told the Guardian he was impressed but said, “There may be environmental benefits, e.g. for biodiversity, from sustainably managed grazing and increasing animal product consumption may improve nutrition for some of the poorest globally. My personal opinion is we should interpret these results not as the need to become vegan overnight, but rather to moderate our [meat] consumption.” + University of Oxford + Science Via The Guardian Images via Depositphotos

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Vegetarian diets could help avert one-third of early deaths, new research finds

April 26, 2018 by  
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Vegetarians, rejoice! While scientists have long touted the health benefits of  plant-based diets , they may be even more effective than we thought. According to new calculations from Harvard University scientists, one-third of early deaths might be avoided if people switched to a  vegetarian diet. The scientists’ research suggests that we have underestimated the positive effects of a vegetarian diet. For example, while figures from the United Kingdom’s Office for National Statistics  suggested that 141,000 deaths a year in Britain were preventable, the new research from Harvard has produced a much higher figure: about 200,000 lives could potentially be saved each year if people removed meat  from their diets . Related: Here’s what could happen if America went 100% vegan Harvard Medical School epidemiology and nutrition professor Walter Willett, a speaker at the Unite to Cure Fourth International Vatican Conference , said, “We have just been doing some calculations looking at the question of how much could we reduce mortality shifting towards a healthy, more plant based diet, not necessarily totally vegan , and our estimates are about one third of early deaths could be prevented. That’s not even talking about physical activity or not smoking, and that’s all deaths, not just cancer deaths. That’s probably an underestimate as well as that doesn’t take into account the fact that obesity is important and we control for obesity.” Committee for Responsible Medicine president Neal Barnard, another speaker at the conference, agreed that people should be more aware of the health benefits of vegetarian and vegan diets. He said, “I think we’re underestimating the effect. I think people imagine that a healthy diet has only a modest effect and a vegetarian diet might help you lose a little bit of weight. But when these diets are properly constructed I think they are enormously powerful.” Via The Telegraph Images via Lefteris kallergis on Unsplash and James Sutton on Unsplash

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Studio Gangs 40 Tenth Avenue "Solar Carve" tower tops out near NYCs High Line

April 26, 2018 by  
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New images reveal  40 Tenth Avenue  — formerly called the Solar Carve Tower  — has officially topped out near New York City ‘s 1.45-mile-long High Line park. Designed by Studio Gang , 40 Tenth Avenue features a chiseled shape that works with the sun’s light angles to avoid casting unwanted shadows on its surroundings. With an abundance of outdoor space and large glass windows, this commercial building is designed to nurture the relationship between the building’s occupants and the natural world. The 10-story, LEED Gold -targeting 40 Tenth Avenue building topped out earlier this month in the Meatpacking District . Developed by Aurora Capital , the commercial tower draws on Studio Gang’s solar carving strategy: sculpting the building with the sun’s angles in mind to avoid casting shadows on the street or the High Line. Related: New renderings of Studio Gang’s Solar Carve building reveal a faceted jewel that hugs the High Line Studio Gang said, “The tower takes its form from the geometric relationships between the building’s allowable envelope and the sun’s path.” The designers kept efficiency in mind when choosing building materials and methods, and they worked with an Italy-based manufacturer to create custom curtain wall units to “efficiently and seamlessly maintain the mass of the glass carve.” High-performance glass with low reflectivity also minimizes the building’s impact on the surrounding environment . High ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows  — affording panoramic views for those working inside — allow natural light to reach every work space in the tower. Studio Gang said, “Large, diamond-shaped panels tilt downward to dramatically capture direct overhead light for corner work spaces.” 40 Tenth Avenue boasts more than 20,000 square feet of outdoor space, including a 10,000-square-foot shared roof deck, private outdoor spaces for eight floors and an 8,000-square-foot outside area on the second floor right next to the High Line. The building is slated for completion in March 2019. + 40 Tenth Avenue + Studio Gang Images courtesy of Max Touhey and Studio Gang

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Studio Gangs 40 Tenth Avenue "Solar Carve" tower tops out near NYCs High Line

20% of US population produces 46% of food-based emissions

March 22, 2018 by  
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A monumental new study demonstrates that one-fifth of the American population is responsible for nearly half of all food-based emissions. Popsci reports that people who eat a lot of animal protein, especially beef, account for a larger share of greenhouse gas emissions — although, author Sara Chodosh also illustrates the extreme complexity behind the study’s potentially groundbreaking conclusions. Read on for a closer look. Published in Environmental Research Letters specifically sought to understand how diet and associated emissions varies among the American population. Martin Heller, an engineer at the University of Michigan’s Center for Sustainable Systems and study contributor, told Popsci it was surprising to realize just how varied they are. “I don’t think any of us really had a strong sense of how distributed the greenhouse gas emissions would be,” he says. “That was perhaps the most striking result.” Getting to the meat of the matter (sorry, I couldn’t resist) involved consulting several different databases and picking apart the life-cycle analysis of every morsel. Chodosh writes : “The NHANES survey results can tell you what a broad spectrum of American plates look like on any given day, but tells you nothing about the environmental impact of those foods. To do that, you have to go to the Food Commodities Intake Database, run by the EPA, and figure out how much meat might be in that meat lasagna, or how many tomatoes are in a generic salad. From there, you have to link the quantities of each type of food to the emissions associated with producing it.” Related: Garlic may be the key to slashing methane emissions from cows When evaluating the emissions of a single tomato, it was necessary to know how much fertilizer was used in its production, and then how much fuel was used to transport that tomato. With poultry, the researchers had to also consider feed production, and when analyzing the greenhouse gas emissions associated with eating beef, they had to calculate the amount of methane released by cow burps. I urge you to head over to Popsci to read the full details , because this short synthesis doesn’t do their reporting justice, but here’s the bottom line that we found so interesting: What next? Now that we know one-fifth of the American population is producing nearly half of food-based emissions — which in their turn are helping to melt glaciers and unleash devastating wildfires, not to mention the numerous adverse health hazards attributed to climate change — what do we do with that information? Heller tells Popsci, “Clearly we’ve not been very good at encouraging people to shift their diets for their own health. Relative to what our recommended healthy diet is, Americans do pretty poorly,” he says, “But I’ve started to try to think about it as the secondhand smoke of diet choice.” Fascinating. If you understood that your dietary choices directly hurt your neighbor, would you make a switch? + Environmental Research Letters Via Popsci Images via DepositPhotos 1 , 2

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