This is my number one go-to broth in the fall/winter while I’m a bit of a soup/stew addict during these times – it’s great for heartier soups and stews, and compliments vegetable-based soups very well, too. I do also use it for cooking grains and pulses, however usually I’ll favour a lighter chicken or vegetable stock for these. If you’re new to broth making, you might want to read up on some tips and info here that are good to know going in as you make your first broth.
For this broth, it’s best to use a mix of marrow and knuckle bones; and I like to ensure there’s a bit of meat on at least some of them for flavour. You can add the vegetables as directed in the recipe below, or follow your own devices as it’s not absolutely essential to be exact here. For example, you might instead want to keep a freezer bag full of vegetable ends left from other cooking as these work great for flavouring to your broth. Or, if you’ve got a lonely bunch of parsley in the fridge but no thyme, feel free to substitute. There have been times where I have forgotten to pick up any veg & aromatics to add to the broth, and so I simply brewed just the bones themselves. It still resulted in a great tasting broth, and I just made sure to compensate by adding more flavour elements in the final dish. In the recipe below, you’ll find the veg is quantified specifically — this is great to use as a guideline, but those frozen vegetable ends will also work (keeping a similar volume and ratio as specified in the recipe).
I like to make a little sachet with the thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns — while this isn’t absolutely necessary, I find it helps to keep things submerged a bit better.
Follow theses steps and you are on your way to having a supply of beautiful bone broth great for soups, stews, etc. – ready to go as you need it!
- 3 kg beef soup bones (preferably mostly marrow with some knuckle and neck if available)
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs thyme
- 2 tbsp whole black peppercorns
- 2 large yellow onions, halved (skin on)
- 1 head of garlic, halved
- 3 carrots
- 4 celery stalks
- 1/2 cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 8 litres cold water, plus more as needed
- Cheesecloth & kitchen string (optional)
Preheat oven to 425°F. Place the bones in a single layer on a roasting pan, and roast for 45 minutes.
Transfer the bones to a large stockpot. Add the bay leaves, thyme, peppercorns, onions, garlic, carrots and celery (you can tie the bay leaves, thyme, and peppercorns into a little sachet using cheescloth and kitchen string — not absolutely necessary, but I find it keeps things submerged a bit better). Pour in the apple cider vinegar and water. Ensure the ingredients are submerged in water, add more as needed.
Bring the liquid to boil over high heat, then reduce heat to a low simmer for at least 12 hours and up to 48. Ensure the liquid level is maintained by adding more water as needed.
Carefully remove the vegetables and bones using tongs. Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve.
If using glass jars for storage, it’s important to reduce the heat of your broth somewhat — or you will end up with broken jars, and a piping hot mess! I normally add 2 trays of ice cubes, and allow the broth to rest covered with a tea towel for about an hour before transferring to jars. It’s important to cool the broth as quickly as possible as it can become a breeding ground for bacteria if left out too long. For storage in the freezer, ensure you’ve filled the jar at least 1-2 inches below the brim.
Keep in mind this is a concentrated broth, and you’ll likely want to add a ratio of broth to water that is 2:1.
You’ll see there is no salt added here as I find it’s best to add salt to the final recipe with which you’ll be using the broth.
Keywords: broth, soup, beef broth, bone broth, savoury, collagen