In this episode of the Vedge Your Best podcast, I’m pleased to welcome Max La Manna, a chef and climate activist known for his work at the intersection of veganism and the zero-waste movement. Max discusses his new book, You Can Cook This, which focuses on creating delicious dishes using food parts that are often wasted. He shares insights on how to reduce food waste and store food properly to extend its shelf life.
Max approaches cooking from a creative standpoint to make the most of the ingredients at hand. He emphasizes the importance of storing food correctly–particularly potatoes, which are the most wasted food item. He suggests looking at what supermarkets freeze and trying to implement similar practices at home.
You Can Cook This was inspired by Max’s interaction with his Instagram followers, who share the ingredients they commonly waste. The book includes simple, delicious, easy-to-prepare recipes designed to encourage people to eat more plants and create less waste.
In the book, Max also touches on the importance of involving family in meal planning and cooking, which can be a fun and educational experience.
During our conversation, Max shares his journey from working in various food-related jobs to becoming a successful author and social media influencer. He talks about the process of writing his cookbook, including recipe testing and working with a photographer to capture the essence of his dishes.