Don’t throw away the water in which you cook pasta, rice, vegetables and the likes: you can use it again and give it a second life right in your kitchen – or in your garden.
Whenever you prepare pasta or rice, make sure to always keep aside at least some ladles of the water you are boiling them in. When you’re preparing a pasta sauce, especially if it involves solid ingredients, this cooking water is your best ally to blend together all the flavours and make the final result as creamy and smooth as it can be.
If you’re preparing pizza or bread dough, substitute the normal water with the water used to cook pasta. As this water will be already salty, you don’t need to add more salt to the dough you’re kneading. This means that you can not only save up on water, but also on other pantry supplies.
Perhaps the best feature of cooking water is that it’s rich in starch, vitamins and minerals. Think about spinach, carrots, cabbage, broccoli, tomatoes… they are rich in vitamins and minerals which are released in the water when the vegetables are boiled.
This bland vegetable stock can be used in turn to cook the pasta or rice with which you will accompany the vegetables. Here is an example of such a recipe: Broccoli Rabe Orecchiette, or Penne with Fresh Tomato Sauce.
And finally, if you did not add any salt to the cooking water, especially if you just blanched the vegetables, try using it to water your apartment plants or your garden. Just let it cool completely before using it, et voilà – your plants will thank you.