Zero-waste Cooking

As much as possible, striving to run a zero-waste kitchen is central to our food philosophy at Copper + Cloves.

Zero-waste Cooking

As much as possible, striving to run a zero-waste kitchen is central to our food philosophy at Copper + Cloves.


A zero-waste style of eating is one that firstly aims to avoid any unnecessary plastic packaging. This isn’t easy- sometimes a supermarket even puts vegetables in plastic covers. Whenever we can, we buy from shops that sell their fresh produce loose- and we take our own cloth bags to fill. We take jars and bags to fill up with grains, dals, pulses and nuts rather than buying prepackaged plastic packets when we can too. There are several shops in Bangalore which enable you to shop zero-waste these days!


Another way of being mindful about waste is by ensuring we use the whole plant to prevent food waste. Sometimes, the leaves or the peel of the vegetable that we throw away has a lot of nutrition. For instance, take the banana. We tend to ignore the flavour of the beautiful flowers (which can be made into a delicious sabzi), the amazing beauty benefits of the peel (banana peels are excellent for treating acne and pigmentation) and the amazing aroma and flavour the leaves depart to any food steamed inside of it.


We call this ‘root to stem’ cooking and this has been one of the long standing practices in a lot of cultures. For instance, banana leaves have been used traditionally in south India to steam fluffy idli’s, lavish feasts are served on them, and they are also used to decorate mandaps. Onions and garlic are one of the most widely used vegetables, and the outer sections that we throw away are packed with anti oxidants and they flavour, and can be boiled along with the discarded part of other vegetables to flavour stocks, stews and soups. You simply boil the discarded vegetable sections with water and salt, strain, and you can freeze stock in the fridge for months.


The peels of root vegetables (carrot, beetroot, potato etc,) especially those grown organically, contain a lot of the nutrition associated with that vegetable, all you need to do is scrub the skin really well and cook the vegetable with the skin on. Besides ensuring that you get all the nutrients, root to stem cooking is a conscious choice helping the environment and helping you stay connected mindfully to your food. 


So next time, you throw away something, stop for a moment and think, can you use it otherwise? Check out the recipes below and tell us how you like it!


The vegetable we decided to use is the largely underrated broccoli. Broccoli is one of the most nutritious vegetables loaded with Vitamin C, K and loaded with Folic acid which builds collagen.


However, we often end up overcooking it which strips away the nutrients and the taste, making it look sad and dull. We’ve come up three recipes which use all the parts of the broccoli- nothing is discarded! This could make the perfect vegetarian summer feast.

Charred broccoli with garlic, lemon, chilli and toasted almonds:



1 head broccoli

3 cloves sliced garlic

1 Tbsp Lemon juice

1 sliced Red chilli

30 gms Roasted almonds

1 tsp Extra virgin olive oil


What to do

  1. Heat a pan on the stove and make sure its searing hot

  2. Add the olive oil and the garlic and the chilli.

  3. Add in the broccoli. Cook the broccoli until its starting charring

  4. Add in lemon juice and toss the broccoli in it

  5. Top it with roasted almonds




1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp capers

1 tbsp dill


What to do

  1. Finely slice the stalk into rounds

  2. Heat the oil and stir fry for 3 minutes, then add the capers and the dill and stir fry for a further 1 minute.





1tbsp Kalonji seeds (Onion seeds)

1 tbsp Olive oil


Tahini sauce: 



15g tahini

5ml honey

10ml water

5 ml lemon


What to do

  1. Fry the leaves with olive oil and kalonji seeds for 2 minutes.

  2. stir through 1 tablespoon of tahini sauce.

  3. Click a picture, upload it on your instagram and tag us @copperandcloves.