Bone broth is BIG. I knew it for sure when I saw that Pacific Foods is now making it, and whole cases were specially displayed at Whole Foods. So what’s the deal?
Essentially, a bone broth is just animal bones simmered in water. But unlike broths and stocks where the simmering is done a few hours, a bone broth is simmered for a long, long time–like 24+ hours. That’s why I use a slow cooker to make it.
Why the new and sudden interest in this old-fashioned staple? Just like fermented foods, another old-fashioned food given new life, we’re loving bone broths because they are nutritional powerhouses. Seems old-timers knew a thing or two about nutrition without so much as a single study to rely on!
In addition to great nutrition, let me add that bone broths have incredible flavor. Although canned broths work fine if you’re short on time, making your own broths, stocks and especially bone broths will take you into another taste stratosphere. If you can just get yourself to try it a couple times and get over the initial hump of making your own, you’ll find it actually requires a pretty minimal time investment and pays off in extra flavor 10 times over. Plus,
- it’s a lot less expensive than store-bought, actually costing about $0.25 since it’s made mostly with bones you’d otherwise toss, and
- homemade doesn’t contain the natural flavorings, colorings, sugar, tons of salt, etc., etc. that many packaged broths now include.
Like Jenny, I almost always have some bones simmering for a broth that can add easy, great flavor to all sorts of dishes. This week, for instance, with some pork bone broth simmered up last week, I made pork green chili. I’ve had a hankering for it, since I have LOTS of roasted chiles from my CSA. They are prepped and bagged in the freezer, waiting anxiously to be put to use. Also in my pantry:
- jars of tomatoes from my summer CSA,
- jars of tomatillas from my garden, and
- lots of potatoes, garlic and onions (the last of 2014’s produce harvested in the fall and distributed in my winter CSA.)
It’s so nice to have a helpfully stocked pantry. Drawing from mine, I was able to come up with a great dish, no grocery shopping needed. Check out the recipe in the next post.
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