Broth Pageant


This weekend I made another batch of broth, something I do every 2-3 weeks.  I was out of leftover chicken/turkey carcasses and only had a ham bone from a relic of a spiral sliced ham we had around Christmas. So, I was faced with buying some bones.  My local market regularly has these.  Imagine my surprise to find that they are no longer cheap or free!  After paying $1.90/lb for 4 lbs of bones (most of which appeared to be upper femurs and pelvises from young cows) I trundled home along with the rest of my groceries.

To get the best flavor, you need to roast the bones.  I splashed mine with some olive oil and salt and stuck them in the oven at 350 for about an hour.  They did smell delicious and rendered off a nice bit of fat (that I gave to the chickens).

Then, they and my old ham bone went into the stock pot with the usual suspects:  onion, garlic (fresh and some leftover roasted garlic), fennel root, celery, and carrots. I have a huge 8 quart pot, and I added just enough water to cover everything, probably about 6 quarts of water (24 cups).   After 8 hours simmering, I added fennel seeds, star anise, allspice berries, cinnamon stick, cloves, cumin seeds, bay leaves, a quarter of a lemon, and pepper corns.  I cooked it for another hour with the spices.  Then it was ready to be strained and filtered.  After that I gave it another hour to reduce, tasted it and added some salt.  It was a pretty brown, but I wanted it darker and sweeter, so I added a tablespoon of Kitchen Bouquet (shhh. . . don’t tell anyone!) and a tablespoon of brown sugar.  Owing to the all the marrow, the broth was/is really rich.

It yielded 20 cups of shimmery and gelatinous, mahogany broth.  But I forgot to take a picture!

But, have no fear; I have pictures of many other broth adventures.  You know, some people take pictures of sunsets or cats, but I take pictures of broth . . . well, at least some of the time.

p.s.  I gave the leftover meat/cartilage bits, carrots, celery and garlic to the dogs.  No wonder they hang around the kitchen! (Sorry, no cooked bones or onions for dogs!)

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