Are you notorious for letting good vegetables go bad in the fridge? I am. Besides these amazing green bags to keep your veggies from going bad in the first place (I just ran out and need mooooore!), throwing them all in a broth is the way to go. In fact, that’s the best way to get a soup broth recipe that goes with everything. This recipe goes with soup, risotto, rice, and more.
Treat this like a spring clean your fridge type recipe. However, I understand, if this is your first time making broth, you probably want a recipe. I usually do too! But my chef goal for you is someday this recipe will just be a guideline. Let your fridge guide you! And if you don’t now, you will once you get more comfortable with making broth.
I made broth on Wednesday before I went to sleep, around 10pm, turned it on low, and started jarring it around 4pm on Thursday. The house smelled so good that my Mr. Wonderful kept asking me what I was making. Every hour it smelled just a little different, stronger, better. So, of course, I had to make soup that night. It just smelled so good!
I always chop my vegetables enough for 2 meals at once so it’s ready to go. So after I was finished with my perfect base broth, I got a big pot out and decided to make a moroccan curry lentil soup. Extra spicy for Mr. Wonderful, a little on the sweet and sour side for me. Oh my goodness! It was so good I wish you had been there…I still have a cup left. Any takers? But the best part of soup is I can clean out my fridge and pantry! I usually don’t know how a soup will turn out till it’s finished because I just start dumping stuff in. Amalgam soups are the best.
At the beginning of the month, we talked about why I make broth instead of buying it. We’ve also talked about why I prefer my basic broth recipe to be kept pretty simple (there is already salt in anything canned, like beans, your spices in a meal will change what you want in your broth, etc.), what you should know about different broth methods, tools and tricks when you make a broth recipe, and the ingredients you need for the perfect vegetable broth with lots of ingredient descriptions and choices.
After I gave you my list for broth, I realized something awesome! You know how store-bought broth always adds sugar? I have a new broth secret. Add half an apple to your broth recipe and it tastes like you added some sugar to your soup broth recipe.
But of course with all discoveries there is usually a story. First off, you should know I put EVERYTHING in mason jars and am usually pretty good about labelling them. You should know I make a lot of fresh juice and freeze it so I’m not in the kitchen all the time. I always make enough for an army. I also freeze broth, nut milk, and you name it.
But back to my story…I made chili a couple weeks back and I pulled a broth jar out of the freezer to throw in. What I couldn’t figure out is why it was so sweet! Turns out I had dumped an entire quart of fresh apple juice into my chili. But strangely, once I had diluted it properly, it was really tasty! Obviously, I wish I had only put a quarter cup in, but I would’ve never known the beauty of adding fruit to a broth if it weren’t for that experience. Moral of the story: Always try to learn something from your mistakes. In my case, I learned about the power of an apple in your broth. If you don’t like anything sweet, omit it from the recipe, but for me, since I try not to add sugar to anything, it was the perfect addition.
- 1 cup leeks (any leek part)
- 1 cup celery (any part)
- 2 cups onion (or 1-2 whole onions)
- 1 cup carrots (any part)
- 1 cup turnip (any part)
- 1 cup fennel bulb
- 1 cup fennel stem
- 1 potato (with skins)
- 1 slice lemon (with peel)
- 1 cup of thyme (no need to chop, this is a rough estimate)
- 1 cup parsley (no need to chop, this is a rough estimate)
- 5 Bay Leaves
- 6 crushed garlic cloves
- 10-14 Peppercorns (I used royale, double if you want to taste the spice)
- 1/2 granny smith apple (optional for sweetness, but I highly recommend)
- Chop the leeks, celery, onion, carrots, turnip, fennel, potato and apple into small pieces. Or whatever root vegetables you choose to use.
- Either roast (for a more robust flavor) at 350 until the vegetables are sweating, or add straight into a 4 quart slow cooker.
- Add the water and the rest of the ingredients. Add water until the veggies are completely covered in water to the rim of the container.
- Cook in the slow cooker on low for 15 hours or on high for 8 hours. Rule of thumb: Cook until the vegetable itself tastes like nothing.
- Strain into a bowl that is easy to pour, then strain the fine pieces out with a fine mesh strainer. I pour into a blender and then divide into mason jars.
- Fill mason jars to the freezer line, then freeze once cool or proceed with the canning process.
If you want your broth to taste more like a store-bought broth, see my notes in the last post for additional ingredients. You can also add oil to your vegetables if you decide to sweat them. Again, since I prefer a simple broth that goes with everything, I do not want a strong flavor or too many strong additions. Please make a comment in the post if you are uncertain about how something will taste. I've probably done it and can help you. 🙂
*If you aren't planning to use this broth for 2-3 days, go ahead and freeze it. You can thaw it by placing the jar in warm water.
So tell me:
- What cooking disasters have helped you create a great recipe?
- Did you make this broth recipe?
- What ingredients did you use in your broth?