Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Base for MANY Recipes....Super Simple, Super Cheap Vegetable Broth

As you've probably noticed, I put vegetable broth as an ingredient in a lot of dishes. This is because I make my own. It started because I couldn't bear to throw away things like the leaves and end of a celery stalk or the ends of onions. There's still so much FLAVOR there. I quickly (as in the first time I did it) realized that I was not only saving flavor and turning 'garbage' into something usable and delicious but have you looked at the price of broth these days???

So I now make it all the time. It's super simple and basically free. Just save the ends of carrots, celery, onions, green beans, asparagus, zucchini or any other vegetable (besides cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce) in a gallon sized plastic bag. I call this the "veggie bag". When the bag is full-ish, follow this method. I usually make it about once a week.

Vegetable Broth

In a large stock pot, combine the contents of your "veggie bag" with about 6-8 cups water, 2-6 peeled garlic cloves and a couple tablespoons of herbes de provence. I usually add a couple pinches of salt here too but if you want it low sodium, omit the salt. It's still yummy.

Set the pot on simmer for about 4 hours then add more water. Let it simmer for another 2-3 hours. Remove from heat and strain through a mesh drainer, or colander covered with cheesecloth, into containers. I use quart jars usually but if you aren't going to use it within a week, freezer containers are a better option. It freezes really well.

That's it. Super simple, practically free and priceless for so many uses. Enjoy!