Making Broths and Stocks

We included a blend of herbs in the Autumn Share to steep into broths and stocks because now is the season to start eating warm, slow cooked foods. Food is always the first and best form of medicine but you can make broths and stocks that are even more beneficial to your immune system by adding culinary herbs, medicinal mushrooms and astragalus to the pot. Here are our recipes for a basic stock and basic broth:

 

LAUREN’S VEGGIE SCRAP STOCK RECIPE

 Vegetable stock is an absolute staple in my kitchen.  I cook most foods in vegetable stock that would otherwise be cooked in water, such as grains and beans, and any soups and stews.  It’s a simple and easy way to add nutrients and flavor.  I also like to enjoy a hot cup of seasoned stock on a cold day, especially if I’m feeling a little under the weather. I make stock in an ongoing rotation, saving scraps from veggies in the freezer, cooking stock, and then freezing the stock.  Alternatively, you can always get whole vegetables and use those to make stock if the veggie scrap method doesn’t work for you. This is a loose recipe based on what scraps I like to use to make stock.  You can adapt depending on what you have on hand, or what flavors you prefer:

  • leek tops
  • onion tips and tails (skins are also fine)
  • mushroom stems
  • celery tops and bases
  • cabbage cores
  • kale, collard, chard and parsley stems

Fill a large pot at least half way with scraps and then fill the rest of the pot with water.  Bring to a boil, then turn down to low and simmer for about an hour.  Turn off heat and leave on the stove until cool (I typically make this in the evening and then let it cool overnight and decant it in the morning).  Strain out veggies, let cool and store stock in refrigerator or freezer.

 

FINN'S CHICKEN STOCK RECIPE (adapted from The Art of Simple Foods)

Put a whole chicken in a large pot (you can often get stew birds at the farmer's market)and then pour in 1 1/2 gallons of water (or to cover.) Place over high heat, bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low. Skim the broth and then add:

  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 1 or 2 onions peeled and halved
  • 1 head of garlic, cut in half
  • 2 celery stocks plus leaves
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • thyme and bay to taste

Simmer the broth for about 4 to 5 hours. Strain (saving the meat for soup or other dishes.) Allow to cool and then refrigerate or freeze the broth. Freezing the broth in ice cube trays can make nice single servings to add to greens, etc.