Fall is here. Leaves are falling, days are shorter, and there is a chill in the air. That means its soup time. Soup is nourishing and healing and to get the biggest benefit you can make your own. Sure there is broth in every store, but like most packaged products you may not want all of the ingredients. To get the best you can make it on your own. It is actually very simple. Today I will prove it.
Benefits of Bone Broth:
good for your gut
supports immune system
strengthens bones and teeth
Benefits of Fish Broth
good source of iodine
good source of calcium
RESTORATIVE VEGETABLE BROTH
Never throw out your veggie scraps. Mix up those veggies for this nourishing broth. You can then use it by the cup, or in soup, or a base for sauces and gravies.
1 small to medium leek, sliced lengthwise and well cleaned (use white and light green parts)
2 medium carrots
3 stalks of celery
2 large or 3 medium whole cloves of garlic, crushed
1 very small or ½ large regular or Japanese sweet potato
1 cup winter squash (like butternut)
½ a small bunch kale or chard (or a mixture of leafy greens), leaves only
½ cup fresh or ¼ cup dried shitake mushrooms (or a blend of mushrooms)
1 handful fresh flat leaf parsley
1 large piece of kombu (seaweed)
1 or 2 inch piece of fresh ginger, skin removed and grated
1 or 2 inch piece of fresh turmeric, skin removed grated (or ½ tsp dried ground if fresh is not available)
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 quarts/12 cups filtered water
1 Tablespoon of butter or extra virgin olive oil for serving
Coarsely chop the vegetables into even sized pieces.
Place all the ingredients except for the butter or olive oil into your slow cooker and add the water to cover. Set to 5 to 6 hours on high or 10 to 12 hours on low. (You can simmer it for longer for a more flavorful and reduced broth)
(To make on the stovetop) In a large stock pot, cover the vegetables, herbs and spices with the water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and barely simmer on low for about 90 minutes.
For a brothy vegetable soup with chunks of vegetables:
Serve as is with a drizzle of olive oil or pat of butter and additional salt to taste.
For a strained broth:
Strain liquid through a fine mesh strainer (set vegetables aside). Salt to taste. Let cool to room temperature before refrigerating or freezing.
For a velvety soup:
Place the strained vegetables and about 1 cup of broth together into a blender . Add a Tablespoon of butter or olive oil and season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Blend on high until liquefied.
Store broth and soup up to a week in an airtight container in the fridge or freeze for up to three months.
VEGGIE SCRAPS BROTH
This is the best recipe. You don't have to go to the store, because you use what you have.
any veggies that may have gotten a bit sad and wilty in the fridge
carrot peels and small ends
sweet potato peels and small ends
celery ends and leaves
onion and shallot skins
green onion or leek ends
small amounts of broccoli stems or kale stems
slightly wilted greens from fridge
any other fun vegetable scrapes I may have
fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, rosemary, cilantro)- loaded with vitamins and minerals
garlic – anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial
ginger -anti-inflammatory and immune boosting
shiitake mushrooms – rich flavor, immune boosting, and loaded with vitamins and minerals
turmeric powder – anti-inflammatory
Place everything in a large stock pot. Add water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer (covered) for 1 hour.
Turn off heat. Using tongs or slotted spoon, remove solids. Then strain through a mesh sieve.
Store in airtight jar for up to a week. Or freeze in small portions for use later.
Be sure to use clean, glass containers.
Vegetable broth is good for up to a week in the fridge.
Freeze in thick glass containers. I like to store in smaller portions (about 2-3 cups) to use as needed. Be sure to leave room for expansion so as not to crack the glass.
Freeze in large silicone ice cube trays and store in large freezer bags.
THE BEST CHICKEN STOCK
I think everyone loves chicken stock.. Chicken soup is a staple most of us can remember for all of our lives.
4 to 8 pounds water chicken parts, such as wings, bones, breasts, and legs (see note)
4 quarts water
2 large yellow onions, diced
4 large carrots, diced
4 large celery ribs, diced
8 crushed medium cloves garlic
2 large sprigs parsley
2 packets unflavored gelatin, dissolved in 1/2 cup cold water
Combine chicken, water, onions, celery, garlic, and parsley in a large stockpot and bring to a simmer over low heat.
Lower heat, maintaining a very gentle simmer, and cook for 1 hour 30 minutes.
Strain stock through a fine-mesh strainer, let cool, then transfer to containers and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 6 hours.
Skim off and remove any fat and scum on the surface. Refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 6 months.
If stock is thin even after being fully refrigerated, add optional gelatin solution to stock and bring to a boil until fully dissolved, then refrigerate or freeze.
BETTER THAN BOTOX BROTH
The name says it all. (And it's much cheaper.)
2 carrots chopped medium
2 celery stalks chopped medium
1 medium onion chopped medium
2 cloves garlic
3.5 lb beef or chicken bones or combination of both
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Place the bones your slow cooker. The bones should fill up about 3/4 of the slow-cooker.
Chop your vegetables and garlic, no need to peel. You can also add vegetable scraps and rinsed, crushed egg shells into your slow-cooker. You'll be straining these out before consuming the broth.
Fill the slow-cooker with water. Season with a generous amount of salt (about 1 teaspoon).
Add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar (you won't notice the taste).
Cook on low and cook for 18-72 hours.
Strain the broth through cheesecloth or a strainer and cool. A good broth will usually have a layer of fat on the top, and will gelatinize when thoroughly cool. Remove the fat with a spoon and discard.
SAVORY BONE BROTH
Check out this different version. Don't forget the marrow.
4 pounds beef bones with marrow
4 carrots, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
2 medium onions, peel on, sliced in half lengthwise and quartered
4 garlic cloves, peel on and smashed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
5-6 sprigs parsley
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
18-20 cups cold water
Place all ingredients in a 10 quart capacity crock-pot.
Add in water.
Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce and simmer gently, skimming the fat that rises to the surface occasionally.
Simmer for 24-48 hours.
Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
Discard solids and strain remainder in a bowl through a colander. Let stock cool to room temperature, cover and chill.
Use within a week or freeze up to 3 months.
FISH BONE BROTH
Yes, keep those fish heads. This broth will be amazing in any fish soup or alone.
3 quarts filtered water
2 lbs fish heads and/or bones non-oily fish is optimal
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
sea salt to taste
Place water and fish heads/bones in a 4 quart stockpot.