Last night in the class Winter Soups and Stews we discussed and learned how to make 3 kinds of soup stock, beef, chicken and vegetable. I got this stock recipe from the cook book Nourishing Traditions. I am personally eating less meat these days, but I still think for those who are interested in eating good animal fats Nourishing Traditions is a great place to start. Visit the Weston A. Price homepage for more information of this food philosophy.
I will share these recipes with you here so you can make your own.
Also, if you are local, I have plenty of fresh beef and vegetable stock that I am giving away today. All you have to do is bring a container to 648 Zion St in Nevada City and I will fill it up with a nourishing broth for you to make your own soup with!
I am serious, get over here!
“Good broth will resurrect the dead,” says a South American proverb. Said Escoffier: “Indeed, stock is everything in cooking. Without it, nothing can be done.”
A cure-all in traditional households and the magic ingredient in classic gourmet cuisine, stock or broth made from bones of chicken, fish and beef builds strong bones, assuages sore throats, nurtures the sick, puts vigor in the step and sparkle in love life–so say grandmothers, midwives and healers. For chefs, stock is the magic elixir for making soul-warming soups and matchless sauces.
Meat and fish stocks play a role in all traditional cuisines—French, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, African, South American, Middle Eastern and Russian. In America, stock went into gravy and soups and stews. That was when most animals were slaughtered locally and nothing went to waste. Bones, hooves, knuckles, carcasses and tough meat went into the stockpot and filled the house with the aroma of love. Today we buy individual filets and boneless chicken breasts, or grab fast food on the run, and stock has disappeared from the American tradition.
1 whole free-range chicken or 2 to 3 pounds of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones and wings*
Gizzards from one chicken (optional)
2-4 chicken feet (optional)
4 quarts cold filtered water
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
1 bunch parsley
*Note: Farm-raised, free-range chickens give the best results. Many battery-raised chickens will not produce stock that gels.
If you are using a whole chicken, cut off the wings and remove the neck, fat glands and the gizzards from the cavity. Cut chicken parts into several pieces. (If you are using a whole chicken, remove the neck and wings and cut them into several pieces.) Place chicken or chicken pieces in a large stainless steel pot with water, vinegar and all vegetables except parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and remove scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 to 8 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer and more flavorful it will be. About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.
Remove whole chicken or pieces with a slotted spoon. If you are using a whole chicken, let cool and remove chicken meat from the carcass. Reserve for other uses, such as chicken salads, enchiladas, sandwiches or curries. Strain the stock into a large bowl and reserve in your refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off this fat and reserve the stock in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer.
About 4 pounds beef marrow and knucklebones
1 calves foot, cut into pieces (optional)
3 pounds meaty rib or neck bones
4 or more quarts cold filtered water
3 onions, coarsely chopped
3 carrots, coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
Several sprigs of fresh thyme, tied together
1 teaspoon dried green peppercorns, crushed
l bunch parsley
Place the knuckle and marrowbones and optional calves foot in a very large pot with vinegar and cover with water. Let stand for one hour. The liquid should come no higher than within one inch of the rim of the pot, as the volume expands slightly during cooking. Bring to a boil. A large amount of scum will come to the top, and it is important to remove this with a spoon. After you have skimmed, reduce heat and add the thyme and crushed peppercorns.
Simmer stock for at least 12 and as long as 72 hours. Just before finishing, add the parsley and simmer another 10 minutes. You will now have a pot of rather repulsive-looking brown liquid containing globs of gelatinous and fatty material. It doesn’t even smell particularly good. But don’t despair. After straining you will have a delicious and nourishing clear broth that forms the basis for many other recipes in this book.
Remove bones with tongs or a slotted spoon. Strain the stock into a large bowl. Let cool in the refrigerator and remove the congealed fat that rises to the top. Transfer to smaller containers and to the freezer for long-term storage.
With the exception of cabbages (which include broccoli and cauliflower), which can overpower the flavor of vegetable stock, you can use all kinds of vegetables for this stock. The flavor will vary slightly, depending on the mix you use. Tomatoes can also overwhelm stock flavor, so while I do use them, I keep the amount small (unless of course, you want a strong tomato flavor). Some people feel that asparagus also overwhelms the stock. I personally don’t agree, and find that asparagus adds a depth and richness to vegetable stock.
Making vegetable stock is a great way to clean out the refrigerator of food that is less than fresh; don’t limit your stock making ingredients to whole vegetables. Start saving peels (well washed, of course) and trimmings while you cook. Your stock will be strained before being used, and all those unattractive peels will be gone, but they will have imparted a lovely flavor to your stock. Some excellent vegetables (and vegetable scraps) to use are: onions, garlic, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, celery, mushrooms, peas, corn (empty corn cobs can also add lots of flavor to veg. stock), parsley, green beans, beets, bell peppers, scallions, green onions, shallots, fresh basil or other herbs, etc., etc.
You can also add some fruit or fruit scraps to your vegetable stock ingredient mix. Apples, pears and even pineapple works well.
A good rule of thumb is to have about half solid ingredients to half water. It’s a good idea to throw in a tablespoon or so of whole black peppercorns and a bay leaf or two for added flavor. Cover your ingredients with the water, bring to a boil and let simmer for about an hour. Cool and strain to remove any pieces of vegetables, fruit or scraps. That’s all there is to it. You’ve just made vegetable stock.
In the Kitchen Cooking Classes www.inthekitchennc.com 648 Zion St Nevada City tel: 478-0669