Wednesday, February 27, 2008

How can I be green in the kitchen?

I have done alot of research lately into practices that I can start today that will insure my daughters an opportunity to play with all of the species we enjoy. This is a short list of some things that you can start now:

1. Do not thaw products under water. Can you imagine all of the water the restaurant industry uses quick thawing products. It takes a little planning and implementation of a freezer pull list. Pull your products out early and let them thaw in the walk-in

2.When writing your menus first check the mbay web site to see what seafood is over fished on their list. I have considered asking other chefs to take all tuna products off of their menus for 1 month. Imagine the impact on population if we could do that. I would rather not eat them for 1 month instead of loosing tuna forever. Here is the link to the sight: http://www.mbayaq.org/cr/SeafoodWatch/web/sfw_search.aspx

3. Total utilization. Not only was this a lesson in school but it should be a lesson you practice everyday. This is another reason why molecular cooking is so amazing. For example Alex and Aki from ideas in food compress cilantro stems. This seems like a trivial idea but it is taking a product that is always discarded and turning it into something amazing. Vegetable scraps can be roasted and clarified using gelatin. Pieces of chicken skin can be glued together with activa and used to wrap other proteins for flavor and texture

These are 3 things that you can start today and let me know if you want to do the TUNA boycott!

1 comment:

chadzilla said...

I was doing a similar evaluation in our operation a month or two ago. My first thought was that it is so much easier for independent restaurants to utilize products that are sustainably raised and implement green practices... not accomplished that effortlessly in a hotel food operation. But then I thought about numbers and volume... if a hotel that does 12 million a year in catering can make small changes, the result can be much more effective that a small restaurant going 100% green. It was this realization that made me look into small changes. It's hard to get a staff of 60 to change their ways, but it's something we no longer have a choice in. Uses of paper and plastic, unnecessarily wasting rags, just not being organized in what you are doing. Green means organization, and that is difficult for some cooks. We can put changes in from a purchasing point of view, but they are the ones with their hands on most of the food.
Thanks for bringing up your ideas.