Vegetable Stock Explained
Let’s face it homemade Vegetable Stock beats hands down anything you buy in a grocery store.
Vegetable stock is mineralizing, alkalizing and low in calories.
Just like the picture just roughly chop and leave all skins on.
- Carrots (Do not use the leafy top it will make your stock bitter)
- 1 Strip of dried Kombu
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 TBSP of peppercorns
- 1 TBSP of fennel seeds
- 1 TBSP of Turmeric
- Water (Boil Water First: Read retaining vitamins below as to why)
- Herb Bouquet (I tie mine up and toss it in)
Optional: Chopped Tomato, Seeds from Squash, Asparagus offcuts, Dill & Mushrooms.
Avoid: Artichoke (Bitter), Potatoes (Cloudy) & Rosemary (Yucky)
Tip: Before you strain place pot of stock in the fridge up to 24 hours or over night basically steeping. Your stock will have that much more depth.
Simmer for about 1 hour don’t do more, steeping is key. Basically, Low-n-Slow in a heavy pot. And for you alcoholics out there. Add a splash of white wine during the last 10 minutes of simmering and drink the remaining for yourself. 😛 And for you tea grannies you can skip this part.
Strain and put into containers. Stock keeps well in the fridge for up to 2 days. 3-4 months if frozen.
Inherently when cooking with vegetables you are going to lose a lot of the vitamins. There are some things you can do to help minimize your loss.
- Use your produce ASAP and fresh as possible. Wilted and dehydrated veg is a real vitamin killer.
- Bring water to a rapid boil first before adding your vegetables. You want to destroy the enzymes from the vegetables that oxidize vitamins. So don’t begin from a cold water state.
- Add the chopped vegetables immediately into the boiling water. The exposed surface area of any chopped vegetable releases enzymes that starts to destroy the vitamins. So don’t chop and let it sit on your counter for hours on end before putting them in water.
You can’t have it all! If you are going for flavour at the expense of retaining minerals and vitamins then this is what you can do. Roast the vegetables on a tray for 425C for about 30 minutes or until you see colour developing. What this will do is intensify the natural sweetness of the veggies. This is a real bonus especially if you don’t add any salt. Vegetable stock is actually bland in flavour, so roasting will help elevate the overall taste.
Tip: When roasting don’t crowd the veggies on the tray, spread them out. You want to roast not steam them.
Vegetable stock is simple right? Toss in a bunch of greens and simmer for hours on end and in return you get liquid gold? …well… It turns out some chefs claim boiling or simmering vegetables for more than an hour isn’t such a good idea. Nor it is recommended to use onion skins. It’s been blogged about all over the place that 30 to 45 minutes is all you need for cooking time. Do what you think is best and run with it! You’ll never satisfy everybody.
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