Thursday, February 4, 2010

homemade...vegetable broth

Soups are so nourishing in the winter, especially homemade soups.  I like to make my own broth whenever possible because there is almost always sugar added to commercially available broths even the "better" organic ones.  And I like to use local ingredients whenever possible.  So the other day, Jude and I made a big batch of vegetable broth to use in some recipes (but mostly to be consumed by me for breakfasts, lunch and dinner!).  This is what we used but use whatever vegetables (saved peels, broccoli stems, etc...) you have and see how the flavor changes subtly with each batch.  I was delighted that carrots, black radish, celery root, daikon, parsnips, fennel and peas created a very rich, flavorful broth.

Jude chopped up carrots into roughly inch sized pieces.

Mama cut up a black radish with the big knife into inch square chunks.  Black radishes are very purifying and really good to eat this time of year as a food tonic.  They are not strong once they are cooked and they help maintain your body's alkalinity (really, really important!!!!)

Celery root also proved to be too hard for the crinkle cutter.  It is loaded with fiber, minerals, and B6.

Jude gave the daikon a go, but it also proved to be too hard.  
We like to try though!
Daikon is another powerful purifying food.  

Parnips are great drumsticks...but we eventually chopped these up too.

We coated the bottom of a large stock pot with olive oil and threw in all the chopped root veggies.  I stirred them around quite a bit to make sure everything was coated with oil.  Turned the burner on medium low and continued to allow the to cook for 20 minutes or so until everything was tender.  Then we added water  to cover the vegetables and fill the pot 3/4 full and brought it to a boil. 

I froze these fennel stalks from this summer and added those along with some frozen snap peas to the boiling water.  I also added some sea salt. I let it return to a boil.

I reduced the heat to low, cover the pot, and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes...longer is better.

Strain the veggies...but don't compost them.  
Mash them up and add some butter and a bit of salt and you have a delicious treat!

Pour your broth in jars.  Refrigerate or freeze if you will not be using it within a few days.


Vegetable Broth
what you need:
6 cups of cut up vegetables 
3 Tablespoons of olive oil
2+ quarts of water

what you need to do:
1. Coat the bottom of a large stock pot with olive oil and warm up on medium low heat.
2.  Add hard chopped veggies and cook on medium low heat for 20 minutes stirring occasionally.
3. Add water to fill your pot 3/4 full and bring everything to a boil.
4. Add any tender green veggies and return to a boil.
5. Reduce heat to low, cover and continue to cook for at least 30 minutes.
6. Strain the veggies from the broth.
7. Store the broth in jars that can be frozen.  Freeze what you will not use in a few days.


  1. That is an artwork of a soup stock. Love that your child is so involved (we have that same veggie cutter - my kids love it!).

  2. Wow...I'm in awe of how you can turn an otherwise dreary task into a work of art--and saving and reusing all this amazing food and food bits. I can see I'll be needing a bigger freezer so I can try this out, and store the stock.

  3. Wow, you just gave me inspiration. I love home made broths and my family loves soups. I know what I am making later today. I think I will add some beans and potatoes once the broth is done. Yummy for dinner tonight!

  4. We have that crinkle cutter too. Did you say your drink it for breakfast? It's like the sweet vegetable drink, via denny waxman. It is amaking how different it can taste batch to batch. Jude is a cutie.


  5. yummy. I make stock out of anything that enters our house. Never throw a carcass out(sorry for veggie fans out there). I love that I can get another meal or two out of the leftovers from another. Fun process. Thanks

  6. we have one of those little wavy cutters -- our kids LOVE it!!!!

  7. yeah, jude is a love. i like that he drummed while cooking. and i want some of this veggie broth!! i've never made it, but you know i will now. thank you for this post. i read it like a meditation and it was lovely.

  8. your stock looks amazing! i'm always too lazy to strain mine so i put an immersion blender in and puree the whole thing with the veggies. but i love the look of your clear broth - i need to try straining. and i want a crinkle cutter - the kiddos will have to draw straws over who gets to use it first.

  9. I always make homemade stock, but never thought of adding celery root. I have to try that pronto. I just love to sip on broth during the day:-)

  10. Love your little chef! I also am excited to try some of the different veggies in my next batch of stock.

  11. So sweet! I love your tiny chef too! Hard at work. This soup looks absolutely incredible!

  12. I love making my own broths! I feel so thrifty when I can pull some stock out of the freezer comprised of things that I bought weeks before. It's the best way to make vegetables/meats stretch.

  13. Making broths is such a sweet way to give ourselves a little bit of warmth and goodness. Thank you for this recipe, I am need of a simple moment in the kitchen today, and I think that you have just provided it.

  14. elizabeth, i have come back to this today to make sure i remembered the steps right, and then to see what that knife is called. i tried to get the kids to help me chop, but they didn't like using our knives so much, i'm off to order a couple of those , whatever they are. i'll have to figure it out....dinner is going to be so yummy. it smells so good already. thanks for this inspiration!! my first veggie stock. yay.

  15. mmmm...thanks for this recipe. I forget about some of those root veggies.
    and I learned something today about a body's alkalinity. Had no idea! thanks.

  16. I love making my own chicken broth. But since I am trying to eat more vegetarian, I will be making your recipe! Have you ever tasted veggie broth in the carton? It's so grose! Thanks for all of the great tutorials!!


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