After a few months of finding ways to cook and bake with the pulp from juicing, it seems pretty ridiculous (and wasteful!) that I ever discarded my juicing leftovers.
Using the pulp from my juicer not only ensures that I get all the nutrients from my produce, the juicer also does most of the chopping and mincing work for me. This renders pulp that is more or less ready to be thrown into a recipe, as is.
Get to know your pulp
Of course, it’s easier to use pulp from some fruits and vegetables (apples, cucumbers, leafy greens, peppers, carrots, parsley) than pulp from pithy citrus (oranges and grapefruits), or the seedy pulp from certain small berries.
But once you figure out what produce yields usable pulp, it’s very easy to find recipes that, with a minor adaptation here and there, will allow you to turn your juicing “waste” into delicious meals and desserts.
From juice to main dish
I had a pile of leafy green pulp from a batch of chard and dandelion juice that I sweetened slightly with a few Bartlett pears. I was lucky to find some very vibrant-looking red chard for this recipe, but you can use green chard (as pictured) or rainbow chard as well.
The chard and dandelion juice left me with more than four cups of shredded greens. I gently sautéed the pulp with sweet onions and spices and then blended the mixture into a creamy tofu filling for these stuffed peppers.
Adding nuts or seeds as a topping gives the finished product a nice textural contrast. Topping the peppers with breadcrumbs and shredded cheese is also a nice touch. I recommend serving these with a side of rice pilaf.
Tofu-Stuffed Bell Peppers
Ingredients for Red Chard and Dandelion Juice
- 1 large bunch red, green, or rainbow chard
- 1 small bunch dandelion greens
- 3 ripe Bartlett pears
Ingredients for peppers
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup thinly sliced Vidalia onion, or other sweet onion
- 2 tablespoons dry white wine or vermouth, divided
- 1½ teaspoons coarse sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- chard, dandelion, and pear pulp (see below recipe)
- 1 pound firm tofu, drained and patted dry
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 to 2 tablespoons tamari
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 3 to 4 large bell peppers
- ½ cup bread crumbs
- mild sheep’s milk cheese (optional)
- pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or chopped walnuts (optional)
Instructions for juice
Wash the greens well to remove dirt and debris. Using your juicer, juice everything and collect the pulp in a bag (you may need to change bags halfway through — there will be a lot of pulp). Mix juice and enjoy.
Instructions for stuffed peppers
- In a wide sauté pan over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion, ½ teaspoon salt, and red pepper flakes and cook until the onion has begun to caramelize (adjust the heat if the onion is burning or browning too quickly).
- When onion is golden, deglaze the pan with 1 tablespoon of the wine, and add the minced garlic. Cook over medium low heat for a few minutes more.
- Add the pulp to the onion mixture along with the second tablespoon of wine. Cover until greens have had a chance to wilt. Remove pan from heat and cool slightly.
- Scrape the sauté mixture into the bowl of a food processor and crumble the tofu in. Add the lemon juice, mustard, tamari, and remaining teaspoon of salt and purée until smooth.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180ºC) and grease a 13- by 9-inch baking dish.
- Halve the bell peppers lengthwise through the stem and remove the stem and seeds.
- Scoop the filling into the bell pepper halves and smooth the tops. Sprinkle bread crumbs and seeds or nuts over the stuffed peppers. Top with grated cheese, if using.
- Arrange peppers in the prepared pan and pour half a cup of water into the bottom. Drizzle a little olive oil over the peppers. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, checking halfway through to see if peppers are browning too quickly. Cover with foil for remaining time, if needed.