Broth. Brodo. The perfect harmony of warming, nourishing ingredients. Gently simmered to infuse the liquid with delicate vitamins, minerals and life-giving nutrition from a simple mix of basic vegetables and bones. Its always been my favourite food, as I child I would ask for my birthday dinner to be a big steaming bowl of "brodo" with rice. Being a June baby, this heated meal would dismay my family members, but nothing else would suffice...I wanted soup! When cooked with enough love, patience and know how, it can be the perfect thing to resurrect you from a cold, flu or even a bad day. So grab a glass of wine, put on some Etta James, and make a big pot of chicken broth.
The following recipe is for my basic chicken broth, which I make on a frequent basis in the colder months and have stored in my freezer at any given time. This recipe is a mix of my mother's, a classic clear french consume, as well as some personal added flavour enhancers and immune-boosters.
Please feel free to play around and add different spices and herbs, there's really no wrong way to go about it. Just remember the basics: at least add the holy trinity (onion carrot celery) and if adding bones, let cook for a minimum of 1.5 hrs. Also, remember to continually skin the surface for impurities coming from the bones. This stuff is all the toxins that you don't want in your body. This recipe can be used as a base for anything ! Roast some squash and make a purée soup. Use as the base for a tasty risotto. Add some pastina and beaten eggs with Parm for stracciatella soup. Sip in a mug when you have a cold. It is a life saver.
Ingredients: • 1 whole free range chicken
• 2 carrots, roughly chopped
• 3 ribs celery, roughly chopped
• Bunch of celery leaves
• 1/2 bunch of Italians parsley
• 1 large onion quartered
• 10 whole peppercorns
• 2 garlic cloves, smashed
• 1 1/2 tbsp sea/Himalayan salt
• 3 dry bay leaves
• 3 sprigs of thyme
• 2 small/ medium tomatoes, chopped Add for super health:
• Ginger root, roughly chopped
• 1 tbsp turmeric
• 2-3 more garlic cloves
• pinch of nutmeg ** for vegetarians substitute chicken for 1.5 cups dried mushrooms. Cook for 1 hr Method:
1) In a large stock pot add all the ingredients
2) fill the pot with water until everything is covered by about 3 inches of water.
3) on high, bring to a boil. Let boil for 10min then reduce heat to simmer. There should be small and steady bubbles.
4) using a large spoon, skim off the surface all the dark bubbles that accumulate around the edges. Know as the scum.
5) about 40-50min into cooking, take a large tong and try to lift the chicken carcass. If it feels that it might fall apart easily, remove from the liquid and set to cool
6) pick all the tender meat from the chicken bones, discard the skin, and throw ALL the bones back into the broth
7) continue cooking for a minimum total of 2 hours.
8) put liquid through a large strainer and discard the rest. Your broth should be richly coloured and taste delicious. Add salt to taste.
9) can be stored in the freezer in small batches or used right away Depending on the size of your pot this recipe should give you at least 3.5 litres of broth.