Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Food: Bone Broth

I have been reading about the amazing health benefits of bone broth. The process is lengthy, but not difficult. What is the flavor comparison between boxed or canned broths compared to one you have made...there is none.

What about those health benefits:
  • assists in healing the lining of the gut
  • boosts the immune system
  • strengthens bones, joints, tendons
  • healthy skin and strong teeth
For more information on the health benefits this is a nice article that describes more in depth: Bone Broth Health Benefits

To the local health food store I went! I have pieced recipes together from several sources. This is my broth journey.

Picked me up some marrow bones to get the process going, 3lbs to be a bit more descriptive! I filled a stockpot 1/2 full of water and put it on the stove. I did not turn the burner on, I had read that you should slowly heat the water up with the bones inside for maximum goodness extraction. Almost all the sources recommended roasting the bones prior to get a richer taste. I roasted the bones at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, turning frequently so as not to char or scorch the bones. Once they were done, into the pot they went! I turned the burner to medium, brought it up to a boil, then turned it down to a simmer. I didn't turn it off until 2.5 days later!

Several sources talked about adding veggies and garlic to the pot, but I wanted a very neutral stock so that I could flavor it according to whatever recipe I was making, or flavor it as I drink a mug of it. Kinda creepy, yes, I know. I will get back to that later.

During the process it smells like cooking meat in your house...for 3 browning meat without onions. It didn't bother me or anyone else (that I know of), just something to mention.

At the end, I poured the broth through a fine metal strainer. Picked out the bones and clumps of marrow and put them in a freezer bag to save for another batch. I had read that you can reuse the bones up to six times. Not too sure how I feel about it. I am sure technically you could, but there are only so many nutrients in those bones. I will be researching that to see what others have to say.

I put the strained liquid into the fridge and allowed the tallow (fat) to rise to the top and solidify. Let me tell you, this is not your mother's gravy fat!! I cut that stuff with a steak knife into pie shaped pieces while it was still in the pot sitting on the broth! It was SO cool. I put that into a container to be used as cooking fat later. The broth went into several containers for freezing and some into the fridge for some upcoming recipes such as this Slow Cooker Beef and Mushroom Stew.

Being the curious person I am, and since I have been smelling it for 3 days, I poured myself a small mug of it, added some garlic salt (it was 2:00am and I was coming down from a Game of Thrones adrenaline rush and didn't feel culinary ... curious ... but not culinary). I heated it up and tell you the truth...not bad! I think it has some great potential for drinking, but I am going to place with some ingredients before I say that practice will be a daily ritual for me! I can tell you that it made for an awesome base in the stew recipe mentioned above!!

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