Favorite Vegetable Broth

Vegetable broth cooking on low heat for around 3 hours.

Vegetable broth cooking on low heat for around 3 hours.

I have been thinking about making vegetable broth since the snowy run a week ago. It is perfect for the cold weather. I picked up the vegetables on Saturday and made it yesterday. I use beets, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, and greens. I made it in the 8 quart pot. The quantities of the vegetables are shown in the picture. They sometimes have the beets with the greens attached and then I use the beet greens for the greens. This time, I bought chard and basil for the greens. I like a strong flavor of beets and onions.

Vegetable broth ingredients: beets, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, and greens.

Vegetable broth ingredients: beets, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, and greens.

Vegetable broth ingredients washed and chopped.

Vegetable broth ingredients washed and chopped.

After putting in the chopped and peeled vegetables except for the greens, I fill the pot up almost to the top with distilled water. Yesterday, it took 14 cups. I put the lid on, turn the stove on high, and stay close waiting for the water to boil. Once it has boiled, I add the greens and turn down the heat to medium low. I let it cook for 3 hours with the lid on stirring occasionally. For my desired taste, three hours is the magical number.

Vegetable broth at the beginning of cooking time.

Vegetable broth at the beginning of cooking time.

After the 3 hours are up, I strain out the cooked vegetables, pour myself two cups of fresh broth, and then put the bowl with the rest in the refrigerator to cool while I clean up.

Straining the broth from the cooked vegetables.

Straining the broth from the cooked vegetables.

Strained vegetable broth.

Strained vegetable broth.

Once the broth has cooled down to about room temperature, I put it in quart canning jars with 2 cups per jar. Two servings go in the refrigerator and the rest goes in the freezer. Last night, it made 10 cups of broth. I drink it by itself. It could be used as stock for a bean and vegetable soup. The taste is deep and full. I am looking forward to having some after this evening’s run.

Finished vegetable broth in canning jars ready for the refrigerator.

Finished vegetable broth in canning jars ready for the refrigerator.

Take care and thanks for reading.

Sarah

About Sarah

nature, outdoor, and health enthusiast, book reader, and runner
This entry was posted in Food, Health, Running and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Favorite Vegetable Broth

  1. Shady_Grady says:

    Looks good. But 3 hrs doesn’t overcook it? Interesting.

    • Sarah says:

      Hi Shady πŸ™‚

      From a health perspective, the purpose of a vegetable broth is to extract the minerals from the vegetables. This is why root vegetables are generally used because they are dense and contain many minerals. Minerals aren’t destroyed by the heat when boiling the broth or by the cold when freezing the broth. More minerals are extracted the longer the broth is cooked. Of course, at some point, there will be no minerals left to extract and further cooking would be unnecessary. You don’t destroy the minerals extracted, though, by cooking it longer. The taste of the broth depends on what vegetables you use, the ratio of each vegetable to the total, the amount of water, and the length of time it is boiled. I found through trial and error that 3 hours with this combination of vegetables gives a broth whose taste I find fantastic. I really love the taste of this broth πŸ™‚ Too bad I can’t offer a sample with the reading of the post or you would see what I mean. Vitamins, on the other hand, don’t survive the process of making the broth. If you want the vitamins from vegetables, the best way to do it is to eat them raw or use them to make fresh vegetable juice.

  2. Shady_Grady says:

    hmm. To each her own… =)
    I like celery and carrots and occasionally stir fry them or have them in soups but I rarely cook them longer than 3-4 minutes tops. I want them semi-crunchy. Is there a reason you prefer broth over just eating the vegetables?

    • Sarah says:

      There are two answers to your question πŸ™‚ One is general and the other is specific to me. The general answer is that the broth gives you a concentrated source of the minerals with very few calories. It also doesn’t require that your body be able to digest the vegetables properly in order to extract the minerals. If you are trying to make your body stronger, if you have had an illness from which you are recovering, or if you have a history of eating foods that are lacking in minerals, then your body needs more of a supply than you can get by simply eating the vegetables and staying within your hunger and calorie limits. The same can be said for vitamins only in that case the concentrate source is fresh juice made from the vegetables (or fruit). For me, in addition to wanting the increased supply of minerals (and vitamins) to grow stronger and heal, my body has a very limited ability to digest most foods. I can only handle some vegetables in very small amounts and others not at all. There are some forms of the complex sugars in the vegetables (and fruits) that my body seems to have completely lost the ability to digest.

      I like my vegetables crunchy as well either raw or slightly cooked. I think this broth would make a good stock for a vegetable and rice or vegetable and bean or simply a vegetable soup or a minestrone soup without the meat if you are vegan. Of course, you might not like beets. Some people don’t and it does have a strong beat flavor. When you make soup what do you use for the stock? If you don’t like beets, you could make the stock with carrots, celery, onions and garlic which is what most store bought broth is made from. It tastes better than store bought stock and doesn’t have the added salt or any chemical preservatives.

      • Shady_Grady says:

        I don’t dislike beets but I usually only have them in Greek salad.
        If I make soup I will usually use some no-sodium vegan chicken broth and things like celery, onions, carrots, peppers, daikot or things like that. But I always put the veggies in last. I can’t stand overcooked vegetables.

        • Sarah says:

          Sounds good πŸ™‚ It is curious how people seem to go one way or another with the cooked vegetables. I wouldn’t say I can’t stand overcooked vegetables, but I prefer them crunchy. I do know people who will only eat vegetables if they are well-cooked.

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