It’s winter, which means you’re probably spending lots of time at home cooking yummy, warming foods like soups and stews. And maybe you have lots of vegetable scraps left over from all that cooking. If that’s the case, then you have a perfect opportunity to take this time to learn how to make homemade stock. This is a great skill to have and will result in a delicious, homemade ingredient you can use all the time. Here are some tips for how to make it.
It’s All in the Bones
To get its body, stock needs to be made with animal bones that have naturally-occuring collagen in them which breaks down into gelatin when cooking. You can make delicious stock-like liquid with only vegetables, but technically it’s called a broth, not a stock.
While it’s simmering, avoid the temptation to stir, which will make the stock turn out cloudy. If you need something to do while it cooks, you can skim off any scum that rises to the surface instead.
Another common mistake you’ll want to avoid is seasoning your stock with salt. This is because the stock usually gets reduced in the process of being cooked in a recipe, becoming quite concentrated. Season your final product, not the stock itself.