I know many of us are still trying to de-puff and get back on track after the holidays. Not only that but, we might be feeling a little run down and having a hard time fighting off that cold. Have no worries this broth is soothing and healing, just like grandma used to make… it will have you feeling better in no time!
Making bone broth was one of my most favorite things I learned in cooking school. I had no idea something so easy to make could have such incredible healing power! Now don’t get me wrong I buy broth most of the year, but in the winter there is nothing more strengthening and replenishing for the body. This is one of my secret weapons to staying well all winter long!
Technically this would be called a stock because it uses bones, but the terms broth and stock are often used interchangeably… and the term broth seems to be more universally used, so I call it a broth.
So what makes this broth so special? The secret is using raw bones, as opposed to the bones left over from a cooked chicken, for example… and adding an acid (such as raw apple cider vinegar) to extract the rich source of minerals (such as calcium, magnesium and potassium) and gelatin from the bones.
There is a large amount of research supporting the beneficial affects of gelatin. It helps promote digestion and is used by many to calm and help repair intestinal disorders, such as IBS, colitis, and even Crohn’s. Bone broth contains glucosamine and chondroitin, helping to nourish and strengthen the joints. It also helps nails and hair to grow fast and strong!
As you can see it’s not just coincidence that homemade chicken soup has long been known as a remedy for the common cold. Modern studies confirm that it helps to alleviate and even prevent colds, flu and other health issues. I’ve also added kombu and astragalus to further boost the healing properties of this broth. Kombu is a sea vegetable… ounce for ounce one of the most nutritious foods in the world! And astragalus is a potent immune-boosting root.
Tips to making homemade bone broth:
Use raw bones. Cooked bones have already lost most of their nutrition and healing properties.
Don’t stir the broth while it is simmering, it will cause it to be cloudy.
Skim the scum that rises to the top of the broth. Scum is the impurities of the bones and its components. It’s basically a combination of coagulated protein and fat. It definitely won’t kill you, but it’s better to get out if possible. This will insure you have a beautiful, clear broth.
Don’t let the broth boil, just simmer. If you boil the broth it brings the scum to the top and then back under. Lightly simmer and you will be able to skim the scum off the top.
Do not cover with a lid while simmering. Keeping the lid off helps to concentrate the flavors making a flavorful, thick, gelatinous broth.
Once refrigerated the gelatin in the broth actually thickens, so don’t be alarmed when you pull it out the following day and it is a little jiggly. If you like, you can skim the hardened fat off the top.
To insure a thick gelatinous broth, don’t add too much water and don’t boil. If your broth does not turn out gelatinous it still contains the gelatin, but the broth will not be as flavorful because it is watered down.
Homemade bone both is a lost art. It is absolutley worth the time and effort to make! Don’t be intimidated by the long list of ingredients. This is easy to make and the only thing that doesn’t make it quick is the fact that it needs to simmer for the day to extract all of the essential nutrients from the bones. It’s very cost effective too! And as we have already mentioned so incredibly healing… replenishing the body with vital nutrients and strengthening the immune system to keep you and your loved ones healthy and feeling great through the rest of this winter!
Nourishing Detox Broth
A rejuvenating, healing, clear broth… just like grandma used to make! This light broth helps to strengthen your immune system and replenish the body with the vital nutrients it’s been craving!
- 2 ½ pounds raw bones: chicken or beef (preferably organic or free-range)
- 3 quarts cold filtered water (12 cups) water, or enough to cover all ingredients
- ¼ cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 large onion, chopped in large pieces
- 2-3 carrots, chopped in large pieces
- 2-3 celery stalks, chopped in large pieces
- 2-3 cloves garlic, peel, but leave whole
- 2 pieces of kombu (optional) Sea vegetable, packed with essential minerals
- 4 sticks of astragalus (optional) A root that strengthens immune system
- 1 dried bay leaf
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon whole peppercorns
- 6-8 parsley stems
- Place bones in a 6-quart stockpot or bigger, cover with cold water, add vinegar and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to simmer, and skim the scum for about 15 minutes. I use this skimmer. Do not cover with a lid. Do not stir, this makes the broth cloudy.
- Add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, kombu and astragalus (if using) and bring back to a simmer.
- Put the bay leaf, thyme, peppercorns and parsley stems into cheesecloth tied with twine or a spice bag. Add to both.
- Simmer for required length of time, skimming the surface as often as necessary: Chicken: 3-4 hours, Beef: 6 – 8 hours. The longer you cook the broth, the richer and more flavorful it will be.
- Add water if necessary to keep bones covered.
- Carefully remove bones, kombu, astragalus and other large pieces of veggies, with tongs or a slotted spoon. Place them into a large bowl to cool (not plastic, it will melt!)
- Strain through a fine mesh strainer or line a strainer with several layers of cheesecloth.
- After straining you will have a nourishing and delicious clear broth!
- Cool the broth for about an hour and then store in the refrigerator for 5-7 days or freeze.
Makes about 4-5 quarts
You can find bones at some health food stores in the frozen section or meat department or at a butcher.
Try to get organic if at all possible.
If you keep the broth in the refrigerator longer than 5 days, you can re-boil it and it will be safe to consume.
In the winter to warm your bones or if you are feeling under the weather you can sip the broth in a mug.
Add a dash of tumeric or curry powder for some extra flavor and immune-boosting power.
Use for homemade soups, stews, sauces, cooking quinoa or veggies.