Friday, December 30, 2011

Pulp Non-Fiction

My first pulp-waste-not-want-not experiment was a fail -- no, a hazardous debacle. I didn't take a photo (I was disappointed in the result, so -- grouchy), but the jungle photo of Curacao, above, looks pretty much like the bean soup I created yesterday from a couple of day's worth of juicing pulp, a whole box of veggie broth, an onion, some garlic and a can of beans. The soup tasted like a bland granny smith apple, and the texture was awful. But I am getting ahead of myself . . .

My idea was to transform the pulp into a smooth, creamy consistency, so I dug out my HealthMaster blender by Montel Williams that I received two years ago. This machine, able to turn a cinderblock to dust in the infomercial, has provided me with many satisfying soups, dips and smoothies, and I was sure it was up to the task of transforming pulp into soup. I knew I'd need to add plenty of liquid so as not to overtax the motor, so I did. I used the lowest setting for about four minutes as I sauteed the onion and garlic to add later. I began smelling smoke, so I went over to the stove, thinking I was burning the onion, but then realized the HealthMaster WAS ON FIRE! I ran back across the kitchen and pulled the plug as smoke billowed forth, filling my kitchen. My brave husband quickly picked up the smoking machinery and placed it in the middle of our driveway, away from anything flammable.

Defeated, I pulled out my old-as-the-hills food processor (it's at least 25 years old, and missing most of its parts) and attempted to improve the texture of the above mess. My ancient food processor did not burst into flames, so my mood improved a little. I put a bit of the mixture aside in a tupperware for future experimentation and put the rest of it in a pot on the stove. I added some shoyu. I added some liquid smoke. I added some salt. It still tasted exactly like a grainy apple. Finally I gave up on my initial idea and decided to turn it into chili. I added a McCormick's chili packet. It still tasted like a granny smith apple, but worse.  Sorry -- "waste not want not" didn't work this time. The soup went down the drain, to nourish the enzymes in our septic tank. The bit in the tupperware I will attempt to utilize in a tomato spaghetti sauce, but if that is no good I'm going to quit losing good food after bad, and go straight to plan C -- the compost heap.

Truthfully, the only flavorful part of the pulp was the apple. The kale, romaine, celery, even the carrot had lost every bit of flavor with the absence of juices, and likely most of the vitamins and minerals as well. So I don't feel I am wasting after all as much as I initially did.

Heed my cautionary tale, pulp aficionados, lest your HealthMaster also burst into flame.


  1. Sorry, could not help giggle when I read your story. But really, what a bummer to have your HealthMaster catch on fire! I love my juicer and have found it difficult to juice my pulp. I throw it in the compost instead, and once I did use the fruit in muffins. Happy New Year to you!

  2. My Raw friend just enlightened me. She mixes her pulp in a food processor with flaxseed, and then uses a DEHYDRATER to make crackers. I'm ordering an Xcaliber now. I'll keep you posted.

    I hate it when continued efforts to add to an inherently unfortunate result doesn't result in success. But I guess when you find yourself in a hole, you stop digging? Or dig to China...;)

  3. Oh good -- I have some flaxseed in my fridge already! I bet the crackers would be good with hummus! Thanks for the idea.