Homemade Bone Broth
There are very few things in life that are as healing and flavorful as homemade broth. It makes the salt-flavored brown water they sell in the grocery store to be an insult to the name. This pantry staple is one of the most important and versatile components of myriad dishes. Everyday essentials such as soups, stews, risotto, rice, sauces, and so on...ok risotto might not be essential but you get the point. If you build this flavor into the stock every single one of the dishes that utilizes it will be a banger.
For Vegetable Stock
Vegetables - You can use fresh vegetables such as carrots, celery, and mushrooms. I keep a ziplock bag in my freezer and toss in discarded carrot tops, celery buts, and other bits and pieces as I cook so I have a good broth base when I am ready.
Bulbs - garlic and onion again you can use fresh but I generally toss the onion peels and pressed garlic skins from other dishes into my trusty freezer bag so I don't waste one bit of bio-matter.
Aromatics - You can toss in anything dry or fresh you have on hand. A few springs or teaspoons go a long way because the broth simmers for so long that those aromas are expressed deeply. Whole peppercorns are also an excellent option. Adjust this depending on your bone flavor. If you have a very well-seasoned bone going in you may not need to use as much. If you are making the stock or a specific dish you can adjust this to meet the flavor profile adding things such as ginger if appropriate.
Add for Bone Broth
Bones - you can use chicken, pork, or chicken. You want to use cocked bones as much as possible. They will express more nutrients and flavor. If you buy uncooked bones brown them in the oven before making stock. Look for little nuggets of golden bone opportunities everywhere. If you make a chicken, save the bones in the freezer (I use the same bag as my scraps) until you are ready to make the stock. I have on more than one occasion brought home my bones for a meal out. My husband knows now that if he eats wings or any other bone-in meats for that matter I expect those to be saved for my stocks.
Place vegetables, bulbs, aromatics, and bones if you are using them in a large stock pot. Cover with water. Cook on high until content reaches a boil. Boil on high for 10-15 minutes. Reduce heat and cover. Cook on low, stirring occasionally for 6-8 hours. The color deepens the longer you simmer and is dependent on the bones you used if any.
Strain contented over a colander or fine mesh sieve into a large bowl(s). Let cool. You may choose to divide the broth freeze half and keep some in the refrigerator for immediate use. It will keep for months in the freezer in an air-tight bag and for several weeks in the refrigerator. When you are ready to use the freezer broth simply remove it and either defrost in the sink or in a bowl of warm water.