As I sit here writing, sipping on my Baileys tainted coffee I contemplate whether or not stock and both are the same. A stock, often used in many sauces, soups and bases for countless dishes. A broth, used to make soups and so many timeless culinary experiments. It also sounds well, better; On a menu you would say, poached with “spiced pork broth” not “spiced pork stock”. These words are interchangeable, making food items and menus sound more tasteful and more desirable to eye when read.
If you think about it both stocks and broths start off the same, slowly simmering on the stove for hours with a variety of items such as; bones, vegetables, meats, some herbs and peppercorns. However there are slight differences to consider when being technical about something.
The definition of a stock is bones/seafood shells(and meat if you want), vegetables, and maybe some herbs/spices simmered on the stove for hours. The definition of a broth is meat or vegetables and maybe some herbs/spices simmered on the stove for hours.
What’s the difference? It’s the bones, broth contains no bones at all, meaning there will be no gelatin. This gives a lighter taste, and colour. Now does this mean someone will be angry at you when you do say “spiced pork broth” yet you used bones to make it? NO! I would never not use bones unless I was making a vegetable broth, to me it taste a heck of a lot better. Also like I stated before, these words are interchangeable…and no one follows the definition strictly anyways.
SO, with the stock and broth lesson over here is how you make a delicious stock or broth. You’ll never have to buy the salty boxed stuff ever again for all your soup and sauce needs. Also, did I mention it’s super easy to do, takes little effort, and extremely cheap to make?
Scraps can be used to make any stock or broth, such as carrot or onion peelings. Even though they are normally thrown in the compost they provide plenty of flavouring and can be used instead of using whole items. Saving you money and time.
In the photos I provide I am making a shrimp stock, using shells from the shrimp I peeled at work. Which turned out to be very delicious and, made an awesome soup for my supper that night.
1 large pot.
Container (for storage).
Colander or strainer of sorts.
Ingredients: (for stocks)
Enough bones/shells to fill your pot almost 3/4 full. (you may use some scarp meat if you like)
A bunch of herbs. Such as: thyme, parsley or rosemary. (If desired)
Onions/leeks. (peels are welcomed)
Carrots. (peels welcomed)
Some whole peppercorns.
Tomato paste is optional if making a veal/beef stock.
Ingredients: (for broth)
Enough meat and vegetables 3/4 full. (no meat if making vegetable broth)
Herbs if desired.
**Because both are made the same way there will only be one method.
1. If you desire a different taste, roast bones and/or vegetables till slightly golden at 350 degrees or higher. If you are making a veal/beef stock and are using tomato paste, roast bones and vegetables till golden. Once golden spread paste all over and roast again for about 10 minutes. You do not have to roast.
2. Place all items in a large pot (including drippings and small bits left on pan!!) and fill with water till just over your ingredients. Bring up to a boil and quickly bring down to a simmer. DO NO STIR AT ALL!! How long it simmers depends on what type of stock/broth you are making so here is a list of times.
Chicken stock/broth– No less than 1.5 hours.
Veal/beef stock/broth– No less than 8 hours.
Fish/shellfish stock– 1- 1.5 hours. No more, no less. (less will be watery, more will be bitter and foggy)
Vegetable broth– at least 1 hour.
3. While simmering and depending on the type of stock/broth you’ll want to skim the fat off the top. Using a ladle grab the fat the floats on top throughout the whole time it’s simmering. By doing this it will become less bitter and of course less fatty.
4. Take off heat and strain into your desired container, leaving no small bits. Let cool. End product should be clear and have plenty of flavour.