Thursday, November 11, 2010

Vegetable Broth Basics

this is one of my fav things to do. nothin'll change your dish quite like the veg broth. whatever i have goes in, but i do follow a bit of a guideline. & of course, the option is there to sauté the veg in the pot, or first roast them in the oven. the latter will give a full rich broth. when converting conventional recipes to vegan, i use the sauté veg stock for general usage, ie. a vitamin rich replacement for plain water. i consider a roasted veg broth more of a chicken stock substitute, & roasted mushrooms/veg (perhaps with miso) as a base for recipes that would otherwise call for beef stock. that all said, i don't have these broths on hand at all times, i do usually keep the sauté veg stock in 2 cup portions in the freezer. someday *dream*, i'll have a standup freezer for such things, so i can have all of the above on hand.

Basic Vegetable Stock

olive oil, 1 Tbsp
onion, 1 large
celery, 2 stalks
carrots, 2 large
green onions, whole bunch
garlic, whole head
fresh parsley 9 sprigs
fresh thyme, 6 sprigs
bay leaves
salt, 1 tsp
2 litres water

remove any dirt, or any questionable spots, but leave the peels on, then chop veggies into 1" chunks. heat oil in a stock pot, sauté veg for 10 to 20mins, stirring frequently, though i let them stick a bit, as if carmelizing to brown them for flavouring. stir in the salt, let sweat a few mins. then add water, bring to boil, then to a simmer for 30mins. strain.

when simmering, throw in other roasted or raw veggies on hand: broccoli, cauilflower, sweet potato, parsnip, zucchini, other squash. just be aware of the changes some veg will produce; colour, sweetness, bitterness.

also you can throw in spices that will complement a dish you may have in mind: hot peppers, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, anise, oregano... the list goes on endlessly.



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