Making broth seems like an ominous task, shrouded in mystery and hidden behind canning dangers, it seems an impossible job. I have good news; it’s really easy. With a few simple steps you too can keep your pantry stocked with stock!
A beef bone broth starts with a bone. You can get bones at your local grocer, butcher or farmer’s market. In this case you are looking for a beef bone. If you don’t see them in the case, ask at the counter. My beef farmer always had some in the cooler for regular’s pooches and for me.
You will only need one nice sized bone for 2 quarts of broth. I use my large stock pot, put the bone in and then fill the pot almost to the top with water. Add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt and a few whole peppercorns. Bay leaves are next, I use at least 2 but more likely 4, this is up to taste. A splash of last night’s red wine will add depth of flavor if you have any. The rest is fun, very much like Stone Soup.
Keeping kitchen scraps in the freezer can really save time on making broth. I use a take out container and add carrots scraps, onion peels, celery ends and leaves as they happen throughout the week. When it’s time to make stock I can just empty this container into the stock pan. Truly something from nothing.
However, if you don’t have a kitchen scrap container in your freezer, no worries, we can still make this work in a few easy steps. A small onion simply cut in half and tossed in the pot to start. After, I will add carrots, no need to peel them, just wash and remove any icky parts and add to the pot. I will usually chop them into a couple of large pieces. A couple of celery stalks with leaves are also added to the pot. If you have a mushroom or two kicking around, throw them in too, they add a deep earthy flavor.
Now you bring the stock to a boil and then turn down to a high simmer. Do not cover. Let the liquid reduce to about half the pot. This will take a couple of hours, enjoy all the lovely smells. I set in the sink another large stock pot with a strainer. If you have cheese cloth, you can layer this inside the strainer to keep the smaller bits out of your stock. When the stock is cool enough to handle drain through the strainer into the other pot. Throw away the scraps and bone. Return the stock to the stove and bring back to a simmer. It’s now ready.
You can either use your stock right away or you can store it in the refrigerator. I will fill my canning pot with water and boil two, quart mason jars. Once they have hit boiling, I will carefully fill the sterilized mason jars with the hot beef broth using a funnel. Fit top on and return to boiling water for five minutes. Remove the hot filled mason jars from the boiling water bath and let cool. You will know its working when you here the magical pop of the mason jar. Please use caution when handling hot mason jars, make sure you have the proper canning utensils. Freezing the broth is also a possibility.
Now we all know the secret, Bone Broth is basically Stone Soup. Have fun!
1 Beef Bone
2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
A few Peppercorns
2-4 Bay leaves Whole
Splash of Red Wine
2 Celery Stalks with Leaves
2-4 Whole Mushrooms