As the air turns crisper, we naturally start to crave warmer, moist foods. It’s a perfect time to make simple, nourishing bone broth.
Why bone broth?
For one, its a nutrient dense food. The minerals in the bones dissolve into the broth and are easily digested and absorbed. Bone broth is also rich in the amino acid glycine, which helps nourish and heal the gut. It’s also an extremely economical food. Grassfed beef bones can be bought for mere cents per pound and leftover veggies can be used to fill out the flavor profile. And if that’s not enough to convince you, bone broth will make you a rock star in the kitchen. Add it to soups and stews to make them more flavorful or braise meats in it. My homemade beef broth is what makes my pot roast a perennial crowd favorite. Don’t be surprised if people start asking where you got your mad skills in the kitchen!
You can make bone broth from both beef bones or chicken bones. I’ve found that you can buy the beef bones by themselves, but the best way to get chicken bones is to buy a whole, pastured chicken. Roast the whole chicken and serve it for dinner one evening. Pick the carcass clean and use those bits to make a chicken salad for lunch the next day. Then place the bones into the stockpot and cover with water (3 meals from one chicken makes the investment in a pastured chicken worth it! Also the broth will be more nourishing if you use a pastured chicken). Add 2-3 tablespoons of vinegar (1/2 cup for beef bones) to the water and let it sit for 30 minutes. For beef bones, I like to use a combinations of marrow bones and knuckle bones. The knuckles have more collagen in them, which will add more good nutrients and amino acids to your broth.
After the broth sits for 30 minutes, add some peeled cloves of garlic, a pinch or two of sea salt and some pepper if you’d like. Bring the water to a boil and skim off the foam that rises to the top, then turn the heat down and let it simmer, 24-36 hours for chicken bones, up to 48 hours for beef bones. This is a simple broth, but you can get fancier and add more flavor by adding onions, celery and carrots. Once your broth is done cooking, let it cool. You can skim off the fat that rises to the top, or not. Strain out the bones and vegetables, if used.
Once you have made your nourishing bone broth, enjoy it straight up for a super-nourishing meal or freeze the rest and use it as needed for a soup base, to make stews or to braise meats in. Drink daily for optimal gut health.
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