Making Broth – Keep It Simple

Making Broth – Keep It Simple

Many of you have asked for broth making recipes.  Making broth is not difficult and should not be intimidating.   If you can simmer water, you can make broth.   And, the results are so delicious, you’ll never go back to store bought.   We make broth regularly and use it mostly for soups and cooking grains.  Our soups come together easily when we have broth on hand along with fresh, frozen or left over veggies and a protein such as meat or beans.

Here are some tips to get your started.

First, if you start with good quality cuts, you can make an outstanding broth with just meat & bone, water and salt. No need to complicate things if you have excellent ingredients.

Second, use 1 quart water for each 1 lb. of meat/bone in your stock pot. Too much water and your broth will be weak and flavorless.

Choose the Cuts

BEEF

The best beef broth is made with a variety of cuts that include bone and meat.  You can make a fabulous broth by slowly simmering a beef chuck or arm roast until tender.  Or,  you can use a variety of beef cuts & bones to enrich your broth with more nutrition and flavor.

Great choices include Soup Marrow Bone, Knuckle Bone, Marrow Bone, Beef Neck Bones, Beef Short Ribs and Beef Back Ribs. Beef Neck Bones are particularly wonderful giving your broth great flavor, gelatin and tender fall apart meat.

You have one more decision when making your broth – to brown or not to brown. Brown the bones/meat prior to simmering if you want a darker broth – think French Onion Soup. If you want a milder flavor, add raw cuts to your stock pot without browning.  You can oven roast the cuts or brown them in a heavy skillet on your stovetop.

Simmer cuts containing meat just until the meat is tender.  Then, remove meat from the bone and return bone to the stock pot to continue simmering. If you overcook the meat, it can become dry.  How long to simmer to finish is really up to you.  We might simmer a pot of broth for 4-5 hours, turn it off and simmer again the next day for another 4 hours.  Or, you can call it done after 3-4 hours total.

When you declare the broth done, strain and add salt to taste.

CHICKEN

Hands down, the absolute best chicken broth is made with Chicken Necks & Backs.    Other great cuts are wings (lots of gelatin!), drumsticks, whole chicken and chicken feet.  These cuts can be simmered raw or you can brown them to make a darker stock just like the beef broth.

You do not have to use raw cuts to begin your broth.  You can also use any leftover bones, skin, etc. after you enjoy a meal with chicken.  In fact, to make the most of your chicken and stretch your food dollars, try to simmer your leftover bits and bones.  You can always use a little stock for something.

We used to make our chicken broth with carrot, celery, onion and a sprig of thyme, but now we make it with just water and chicken – 1 quart water to 1 lb. chicken parts. Our chicken makes such good broth, we don’t miss the veggies.  We save them for the soup.

Check out our blog post for more details about making chicken broth.

PORK & LAMB

Our favorite cut for making pork stock is the Pork Neck Bone. These bones have a good ratio of bone/meat for making a flavorful gelatin rich stock. We also have bulk Pork Bones to enrich your stock pot with more flavor.  Pork stock is great for making sauces for Asian stir fries.

Lamb stock can be made using any leftover lamb bones/fat or using the bulk lamb bones.  Lamb is seasonal and it not available year round.  Check out our broth making store for availability.

We hope this gets you started making great broth for your family.  We have recipes for some of our favorite soups in our Farm Kitchen.