Bone broth – miracle cure all maybe – that would certainly be great. It definitely gets a lot of good press for its health benefits, and while some sources suggest these benefits may not be scientifically proven it is an old fashioned tonic made with affordable but good quality ingredients, and looking at the finished product can make you feel closer to being a domestic goddess. In everyday cooking it both tastes great and works really well as a flavour boost for quick and nutritious soups risottos…and any other meal you might consider using stock or water in.
Bone broth is said to benefit us in many ways, the following are some of the ways I have read it can help us
- Boost immunity
- Fight inflammation
- Alleviate the common cold and bronchitis
- Strengthen bones and teeth
- Promote weight loss
- Improve hydration
- Aid sleep
- Skin vitality
- Help normalise stomach acid …….
Including Bone Broth in our diet has to be a win win situation, and even if it is not a miracle cure all, it is still real food made simply out of quality ingredients.
To make this at home is simple – especially if like me you have an under utilised slow cooker taking up valuable space. It can of course be made on the stove top and there are also some very good bone broth products available for purchase. My reading suggests that this is a product that you are best to make or buy organic, as any negative elements in the diet of the animal can be stored in the bones and the long slow cooking draws the good and the bad if it is there from the bones. On the positive side organic chicken frames are quite affordable. You could also save the frames of chickens after your roast chicken dinner using them straight away or storing them in the freezer if necessary until the time is right to make broth.
ORGANIC CHICKEN BONE BROTH
- 2-4 organic chicken frames or the frames and bones of 1 or two leftover chickens
- Optional Chicken feet to add more collagen – the stuff that makes it gel.
- 2-4 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother) – this flavour will dissipate with cooking and helps get the goodness from the bones.
- 1 tsp good quality salt
- Optional stick of celery and a carrot to enrich the broth
- OPTIONAL ASIAN FLAVOUR ADDITIONS
- 1 onion cut in half
- 1 2 inch piece of ginger
- 1 small piece of turmeric if available
- 1/2 cinnamon quill
- 1 x star anise
- 1 x cardamom pod
- 1 whole clove
- zest of an orange
Begin by roasting your chicken frames until golden and then adding to slow cooker and fill with water.
Add apple cider vinegar, salt, and celery and carrot if using.
Bring to a simmer.
If you would like your broth to have an Asian flavour now is the time to add the aromatics.
Heat a heavy pan and cut your onion, ginger and turmeric lengthwise and char grill to add flavour.
Add to the pot with the bones.
Add your spices.
Now all you need to do is to leave to simmer gently for 12 – 24 hours.
Your bone broth is now ready to strain and eat.
You can cool it and store in the refrigerator for three or four days if it has no fat on top, OR, if it has a layer of fat this eliminates air and it can keep for up at least a week.
Alternately freeze in portions until ready to use.
IDEAS FOR YOUR DELICIOUS BONE BROTH
These are ideas for one portion – approx 250 mls or one cup of bone broth.
- Warm and drink a cup of straight bone broth.
- Warm with grated ginger turmeric, lemon juice, salt and optional chilli flakes.
- Warm and then add 1 tsp miso, ginger and lemon juice.
- Asian Broth – choose some or all or change it up – ginger, turmeric, lime juice, lemongrass, kaffir lime, spring onion, mushroom, sprouts, asian greens, steamed broccoli, sesame oil, Tamari or soy sauce ……… Meat such as fish, shredded or finely sliced chicken or beef or marinated tofu…..You will need to have both the bowls and broth hot and then you can simply pour the broth over – if you like your soup very hot you might prefer to heat the hard ingredients in the pot with the broth first and then add sprouts, herbs, and lime once it is in the bowl.
Miso Chicken Broth – Always looking for options a Japanese twist gives another flavour to your broth.
To a small pot with a little warmed sesame and olive oil add one or two sliced shitake mushrooms (or regular button mushrooms) to cook briefly and add a grating of fresh ginger. Pour over a portion of bone broth and heat until about to boil and add some broccoli florets or bokchoy or other quick cook vegetables allow to just cook and add 1-2 teaspoons of Miso and a handful of fresh spinach, warm but do not boil. In a bowl I added a few cubes of marinated tofu, spring onion, and mung bean sprouts before pouring over the broth and finishing with a few black sesame seeds or seaweed seasoning and a some chilli oil (yummy but not necessary).
I hope you will make and enjoy this and let me know how you go and your success and failures.