AllyB

Making beef broth

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I wanted to share a beef broth recipe (I guess you'd call it.)  I was telling someone that I made beef broth and they remarked that A. it was too much work and B. it was too hard.

 

 

Soooo....I thought I would post this because it's not a lot of work (ok, maybe it spans a lot of time but work, no) and B. it's easy.

 

1.  Get some beef bones.  It doesn't really matter what part of the body the bones come from.  However, ideally grassfed or organic bones are best (IMO).

2.  Get some veggies.  This is the perfect time to clean out your veggie drawer.  I usually use carrotts, celery and onions.  They can be a little 'floppy'.

3.  Clean the veggies.  You can wash and peel or just wash.  Cut the veggies in half and place in the bottom of a slow cooker.

4.  Add a bay leaf or two and about 10 peppercorns.  Don't salt yet, otherwise you risk oversalting.

4.  Put your bones on top of the veggies (this helps prevent 'floaters'.)

5.  Fill up your crock pot with enough water that it covers all the ingredients....or more if you want.

6.  Cook on high for a long time....like 12 hours.  Add some water if the water level drops.  Go do something else fun.

 

7.  When you're ready to come back to the broth, put it in the fridge.  Let it get cold and the fat will rise to the top and turn solid.  Remove the fat.

8.  Strain the broth through a cheese cloth.  Discard the gunky bits in the bottom of the crock pot.  Straining is an important step because the gunky bits are bitter.

9.  Reduce the broth for awhile on the stove top. Or don't.  It just depends on what result you are going for.  We like to reduce the broth because then you get a more noticable lip smacky broth.

 

Use the broth within a few days, or freeze. 

 

Yes, the process spans a long time (a day or two)  BUT the results are great and it's good for you.

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You may want to add two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to help draw the nutrients in the bones.

 

For those who like to freeze, but are afraid of glass jars, I saw these in the store the other day:

 

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I do beef broth for about 36 hours, it breaks it down to get all the minerals out of the bones. Also, I like to use a mixture of knuckle bones and soup bones with a bit of meat on them. The knuckle bones have all the cartilage on them that is so good for you, and the soup bones with meat on them gives it a richer, deeper flavor. I also roast the bones first, no specific time or temp, just something like 350-400 degrees until they are nice and brown.

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Sorry - been travelling. When I roast, I just do it at 350F for 45 minutes to an hour on a roasting sheet (used to call them cookie sheets/jelly roll pans). Scrape up every bit of the juices that melt out onto the pan. It'll smell lovely when it's happening...I use a mix of marrow bones and leftover bones from whatever cuts I've eaten (steak bones, or shoulder roast bones, etc.) recently. I keep a bag in my freezer for each type of bone (beef vs. chicken, and pork goes into whichever ones I am going to make next). If the bones have already been cooked (the steak/shoulder roast ones, etc.), I just toss them in the pots once the other bones are done roasting.

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I never freeze my bone broth because I go through it too quickly!

 

One "batch" usually produces 4 x 1L (16 oz) mason jars full. I drink a litre a day so I end up making bone broth at least once a week.

 

For anyone who feels that making bone broth takes up too much of their time, my suggestion is to invest in one of these:

http://www.amazon.ca/Instant-Pot-IP-LUX60-Programmable-Generation/dp/B0073GIN08/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1394823102&sr=8-1&keywords=instant+pot

 

The above link is for the model that I have, which I've had for almost 2 years...and it has been worth every penny! It is a pressure cooker...but also has a slow cooker setting! I love the fact that I can set it and walk away (ie: it does not have to be babysat like a stove-top pressure cooker). I can leave the house, go for a hike, run errands, whatever. The model I have has a maximum manual set time of 10 hours, but the new model has a max manual set time of 20 hours(!) You can also make your own yoghurt in the new model:

 

http://www.amazon.ca/Instant-Pot-IP-DUO60-Programmable-Generation/dp/B00FLYWNYQ/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1394823102&sr=8-2&keywords=instant+pot

 

Amazon sells out of these pressure cookers regularly.

 

(Please note that I am in no way affiliated with this company. I am just the very pleased owner of one of their products.)

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I don't think this question has been answered yet....I posted it on the comments to the Whole9 Bone Broth FAQ Blog but I am impatient ;). Do you HAVE to strain the broth before serving? Also, can you use bones that have alread been cooked like from a rotisserie chicken? THANKS! I'm looking forward to making my own beef broth soon!

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Straining is recommended to remove the veggie bits, pieces of overcooked meat and small pieces of bone.  I cook my broth for 30 hrs so the bones get soft and break down (this way, hopefully, more minerals are leached out of the bone and into my broth)  and the meat and veg just don't taste good cooked for this long.  I suppose if you coo for a shorter time, you may not mind the taste of the broth with these pieces present.  However, if you don't cook long enough you will only be getting the collagen and not much of the minerals.  The addition of about 1/3 c apple cider vinegar will help leach the minerals from the bones.

 

I second and third, etc the above suggestion of roasting the bones.  I only roast mine on 375 for 20-30 min on two sides b/c I am impatient and my broth always has had a great flavor (I add black pepper and bay leaf while cooking and sea salt after cooking)

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If you don't want to waste veggies in making stock, you can always use scraps in it. Carrot tops/ends/peels or old wrinkly ones, celery ends and leaves (or super-floppy ones), onion ends, etc. I save all of those bits in a bag in the freezer until it's time to make stock.

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Strain it through a couple layers of cheese cloth (not just a seive).  That gets out the brown 'bits' that can be bitter tasting.

 

It would be an interesting study to see if roasting the bones is better/worse than leaving them raw.  Anyone know of one?

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For chicken, my bones are usually roasted because they are leftover from a roasted chicken.  But for beef, I typically use raw shin bones or joints.  Two things to help with 'thin' broth:  1.  Allow the broth to simmer for 12+ hours.  2.  Reduce the broth after you've strained it to concentrate the flavors.

 

Depending on what I'm going to use the broth for, I may or may not reduce it.  If I'm making soup, I don't reduce the broth (since the soup ingredients will provide additional flavors.)  If I'm making something like Well Fed2's short ribs, I reduce the broth before adding it to the short ribs.  It provides more lip smacky goodness.

 

As a side note, I no longer sell short ribs.  I save them for my family to use in Well Fed2's short rib recipe.  They are CRAZY good!!!

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