IMMUNITY BOOSTING BONE BROTH
How bone broth supports your health
How bone broth supports your health
The winter solstice is officially behind us, but there is still plenty of winter weather to come, making it the perfect time of year to enjoy whiling away a chilly day in the warm kitchen, cooking-up wholesome and nourishing foods to devour with family and friends.
We couldn’t think of a more comforting, restorative and nutritional health-boosting brew than a delicious bone broth. An immune enhancing food staple for many different culinary cultures, the nutrient-rich mixture is super nourishing and deemed a ‘cure-all’, inexpensive and easy way to support your immune system through the winter months.
Creating a broth is also a great way to reduce waste in the kitchen as you utilise waste from scraps (such as the bones themselves) and ensure those vegetables in the fridge don’t go to waste. In addition to being clean tasting and light to enjoy on its own, a bone broth makes the best base for soups and sauces, taking the taste to a whole new level.
What is bone broth?
Far from a food fad, bone broth is definitely nothing new. Popular around the world (a testament to its health benefits) and steeped in tradition, the definitive origin is unknown but bone broth is something people have enjoyed since the beginning of recorded history. So what exactly is bone broth and why has it lasted the test of time?
Bone broth involves roasting bones to render the fat, and then cooking them for a long time (for up to 48 hours) to extract all the vitamins and minerals from the bones and joints.
What are the health benefits of bone broth?
Traditional bone broth is so satisfying and seems to have almost an immediate therapeutic impact which alone promotes a sense of wellbeing. But in addition to making you feel better in an instant, bone broth is an excellent source of calcium, phosphorus, glycine, hyaluronic acid, glucosamine, chondroitin, essential fatty acids and retinol1. It’s also said to help aid digestion and promote gut health, and as 80% of our immune system is found within the gut, bone broth supports your immune health in the process1.
How to make bone broth
2kg beef bones
2 brown onions
2 celery sticks
4 cloves garlic
30ml apple cider vinegar
Before you begin, for a better tasting, cleaner broth, use filtered water.
Pre-heat your oven to 180°C. Place the beef bones in a roasting tray and cook for 30 minutes. This will render out excess fat from the bones. The fat should be kept in a jar in the fridge, it will last for months and is great for roasting vegetables, it is super tasty and full of goodness.
Peel the onions and cut into quarters. Place your stockpot on the stove on a high heat. Add a splash of oil, about 30ml and throw in the onions. While the onions are frying, roughly chop the carrots about 2cm in size. When the onions are starting to brown add the carrots. While the carrots are starting to fry, chop the celery the same size as the carrots, add to the onion and carrot and stir. Smash the garlic with a knife, peel away the skin and throw the garlic into the pot. Cook the vegetable mix for 5 minutes stirring often.
Add the bones, vinegar and water. Bring the broth up to a boil. Some fat and impurities will rise to the top, skim these away. Once about to boil turn down the heat to low and let the broth simmer. Ideally you want the broth to be cooking at around 80-90°C to extract the maximum vitamins, nutrients and flavour from the bones. Leave uncovered for the first 30 minutes skimming the top often.
After 30 minutes put the lid on and lower the heat slightly. The lid will keep increase the heat slightly, and stop too much broth evaporating. The broth needs to cook for a minimum 36 hours but 48 hours is optimal.
Once the broth is cooked, strain through a fine sieve and the broth is ready to go. There will still be some fat present, I like to leave it, but if it’s not to your liking, place the broth in a large container and pop in the fridge. As the broth cools the fat will rise to the top and set. It can then be taken off and discarded. Great for the compost.
Your delicious bone broth will keep for about a week in the fridge, the perfect morning pick-me-up or nutritious lunch time warmer.
For a hearty and healthy meal...
It’s really simple to add beef brisket or beef shin to the broth during the cooking process. At the first stage of making the broth when the water has come to boil (step 3) add the braising beef. Roughly 100g per person is a good serving size. You may need to take out some of the water so it doesn’t over flow.
Adding the beef to braise will enhance the flavour. Cook the beef for 2 to 3 hours, until tender and easy to pull apart. Once cooked take out of the broth and refrigerate. Top the broth back up with water and cook normally.
Once the beef is cold slice thinly.
1/2 bunch greens
8 Swiss brown mushrooms
2 spring onions
Braised beef is great but you can also thinly slice some steaks. Sirloin, fillet or rump are perfect.
Finely slice the mushrooms, greens and spring onions. Bring the broth to the boil and add the vegetables.
Let simmer gently for 3 minutes. Season the broth with salt to taste. I’d suggest about 1 teaspoon.
Place with the braised or raw beef in your serving bowls. Pour over the hot broth and vegetable mix. The broth will be hot enough to warm the braised beef or cook the raw beef.
For the adventurous foodie...
If you’re up to it, thinly sliced beef heart, is awesome to use on its own or along with the other beef and it’s high in protein and B vitamins.
Source: 1. Epigenetic Labs