Properly prepared meat stocks are extremely nutritious, containing the minerals of bone, cartilage, marrow and vegetables as electrolytes, a form that is easy to assimilate by the body. Acidic wine or vinegar added during cooking helps to draw minerals, particularly calcium, magnesium and potassium, into the broth. The gelatin produced from home-made stock acts as an aid to digestion and has been used successfully in the treatment of many intestinal disorders.
In folk wisdom, rich chicken broth - the famous jewish penicillin - is a valued remedy for the flu. Modern research has confirmed that broth helps prevent and mitigate infectious diseases.
The wonderful thing about stocks is that, along with conferring many health benefits, they also add immeasurably to the flavour of our food. It is worth putting time and effort into making meat stocks on a regular basis. Your family will benefit, and you will earn a reputation of an excellent cook.
If your stock has lots of gelatin you will see some thickening, even to the point of jelling completely when refrigerated.
Stock will keep for about 7 days in the fridge. It can also be made in bulk and frozen, (use glass jars, leaving enough room for expansion eg 1-2 cm). If space is a premium reduce the stock further to a concentrate. Then thaw and add some water.
Inspired by Sally Fallon, 'Nourishing Traditions'
'Indeed, stock is everything in cooking... without it nothing can be done'
~ Auguste Escoffier, French Chef 1846 - 1935
A short video demonstration
Click on the play button below to view the process step x step.
For those of us who make stock regularly, check out the variations at the end of the recipe for some different flavours.
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