If you were in Perth last Thursday did you get caught out with that sudden taste of winter weather we had? I certainly did, and probably more so than most, as it was the kids School House Swimming Carnival that morning. As the kids were finishing their races, the rain settled in and the thunder started. I hadn’t organised dinner and after being out in the cold & getting a wee bit damp, I really felt like soup! And thought the kids would love it after shivering their you-know-what’s off all morning!
I wracked my brain for any stock I had in the freezer… yes, a fish stock that I’d made a couple of months prior. Not ideal, as hadn’t made soup with fish stock before, but with a bit of left over coconut milk from the weekend in the fridge, lemons, tamari and coriander from the markets – an Asian Inspired soup sprung to mind! We’d had meat dishes already in the week, so something relatively light, warming and nourishing was perfect. It was delicious and so simple and quick to prepare and the kids happily went off to school with leftovers the next day!
Home made bone stock ready to go in the freezer or fridge – for me – is convenience food, with nutrients to go go! I always have some tucked away in the freezer, ‘for a rainy day’ so I can whip up a quick, delicious soup or one pot type meal with cell loving goodness and nourishment.
Home made bone stock (or broth) is another Hero of the food world. Most food cooked on the bone is going to be better for us, and then stock that’s gently simmered for hours, with the minerals gently leached from the bones, has those healing and medicinal properties amplified. Use any bones, preferably organic and grass fed, otherwise if not certified organic, as toxic free as possible and grass fed for extra cell loving goodness.
A basic soup recipe: I had been out all morning, hadn’t put my mind to dinner, but all i really needed was a few leftover veggies, flavouring eg onion, spices and my stock. I’ve posted a recipe for home made chicken stock previously, you can find it here. Replace the chicken for lamb, beef or fish bones. For anyone not familiar with making a basic soup, here are some tips:
Quantity: a family of 4.
Preparation Time: about 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 – 20 minutes (depending on the vegetables used)
Flavour & Nutrient Enhancers to add:
Bone stock is incredibly healing, particularly for our digestive systems. If you suffer from digestive discomfort or a related illness, check out these ideas on how to enjoy it more regularly:
Now I’d love to hear from you. If you’re already making your own bone stocks & soups, what tips do you have to share with us?
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
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.
Preparation: 10 minutes
Quantity: Approximately 1 – 2 litres
Now just include it in your favourite soups, sauces and other recipes. Then with anything left, pop it into glass jars with a 5cm gap from the top and freeze.