Bone Broth

IMG_4040Bone broth has become very popular – you can even sign up for weekly or monthly deliveries in some places. It has been around for a very long time, often the base for soups in many cultures, and is making a come back. Most people use broth (regular or bone) and stock interchangeably as they are all are made with similar ingredients and cooking method: simmer water, meat or bones (or both meat and bones), seasonings (herbs) and sometimes vegetables (carrots, onions). Once the broth, stock, or bone broth has simmered long enough, the solids (meat, bones, vegetables, etc.) are then removed by straining (typically done with a fine mesh sieve), leaving behind nutrient rich liquid. However, there is quite a difference between the three.

Now let’s break down the differences…

Broth: is usually made with meat and has a small amount of bones in it (whole chicken for example). The simmering time for broth is the shortest of the three, typically its anywhere between 45 minutes – 2 hours and the end result is usually light in flavor, thin, but a good source of protein.

Stock: can be made by either roasting the bones (usually has some meat one them, but not a lot), or not roasting them first, however roasting the bones creates more depth of flavor in the finished product. The simmering time for stock is longer than broth, typically between 3-5 hours. Due to the longer simmer time stock is richer in both minerals and gelatin and also a good source of protein.

Bone Broth: the bones used to make bone broth have the least amount of meat on them. Again, roasting the bones first brings out more flavor for the finished product. The simmer time for bone broth is much longer than that of broth or stock; typically the bones simmer for 24+ hours! Why so long? The extensive simmer time helps to remove as much of the minerals and nutrients that you can get from the bones (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, gelatin, collagen, etc.). Bone broth is a bit thicker than regular broth and has the highest source of protein…the Pacific Naturals that I use has 9gm per 8oz.

All of these are easy and affordable to make at home – make a big batch and freeze it in quart containers, which can easily be defrosted and used in recipes later on. If you don’t have the ability to make it at home (like myself right now), there are some delicious pre-packaged ones on the market. Pacific Naturals is my favorite…its organic, delicious, affordable, and very convenient.

Organic Bone Broth Chicken

With bone broth being so rich in nutrients and gelatin, it is often drank warm…especially during cold and flu season. Bone broth can be also used in numerous culinary applications. I used it recently to make a batch of spicy chicken soup when I was feeling under the weather. When I just want to drink a cup of it, I heat up one of the 8oz package of Pacific Naturals Bone Broth Chicken with either lemongrass or ginger – delicious!

Spicy chicken soup with Thai Chili Peppers

IMG_4035Ingredients

  • 2 Teaspoons Oil (of your choice)
  • 4-5 Large, Dried Thai Chili Peppers
  • 4 Cloves Garlic*, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger*, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon Shallot*, minced
  • 2 Small Baby Bok Choy* (White and green parts separated – White parts cut into 1/2 pieces and rough cop on the greens)
  • 1 Large Carrot* cut into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 1/2 Cup Zucchini*, Cut into 1/2 rounds, then quartered
  • 1 box of Pacific Naturals Organic Chicken Bone Broth
  • 1/2 Cup Gluten Free Orzo Pasta
  • 1 Large Chicken Breast*, halved lengthwise, sliced on bias, cut into ⅛ inch thick pieces
  • Cilantro* – to your taste, torn for a garnish

Method of Preparation

  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add oil, chili peppers, garlic, ginger, and shallots – cook for 1-2 minutes, careful not to burn
  2. Add in bok choy (white parts only), carrots zucchini, cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften
  3. Add in Bone Broth and bring to a boil over high heat.
  4. Next, add the gluten-free orzo pasta and chicken, and reduce heat to a simmer
  5. Cook until orzo is al dente, chicken, and bok choy greens is fully cooked throughout – about 15-20 minutes.
  6. Serve with a garnish of freshly torn cilantro

*organic

“Phở”

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I know that this is by no means traditional Phở, but instead think of it as a tasty interpretation of traditional Phở.

Phở is a Vietnamese noodle soup that has linguine like rice noodles, fresh herbs, a delicious broth and meat (typically beef or chicken…I prefer beef). Given my current situation of lets face it being extremely poor, there was no way that I could go out and buy all the ingredients to make the broth from scratch (it is on my list to do at some point though), so I used a Phở “starter” broth…it was a concentrated liquid broth that you add water to from Savory Choice. Pacific Naturals also has several Phở  to choose from (which are delicious, if you haven’t tried them yet, you should).

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I started off by sauteing some fresh ginger, garlic, and turmeric in a large pot, then adding a whole bunch of vegetables, the liquid broth, and water, brought it to a simmer and let it hang out for a while. I was going to leave it just like that but remembered that in my little freezer I had a small piece (about 3 oz) of hanger steak. I defrosted that and quickly marinated it in some 50% less Sodium Tamari from San-J and about a tablespoon of chili paste. This turned out so delicious especially with the added Thai chili peppers and chili paste. You can add whatever vegetables or meat you wish. I would have added some cilantro, green onions, and bean sprouts if I had them.

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Phở” – Spicy Asian Vegetable Soup w/ Seared Hanger Steak

Ingredients

  • 12 oz of hanger steak
  • 1/4 cup 50% less sodium Tamari
  • 2 Tablespoons Chili Paste
  • 2 teaspoon oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves roughly chopped
  • 1/4 inch fresh turmeric minced
  • 1/2 inch of fresh ginger minced
  • 4 Thai chili peppers
  • 1/2 cup diced carrots (purple, orange, white, etc.)
  • 2 large portabella mushroom caps diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded cabbage (green and/or red)
  • 1/2 cup chopped baby bok choy (white parts. Green tops – chiffonade)
  • 1/2 cup summer squash, julienne
  • 3 packets of Savory Choice Pho Liquid Broth (Chiken)
  • 6 cups of water
  • 4 oz Sorghum noodles, broken in half

Toppings (optional):

  • Bean Sprouts
  • Cilantro
  • Green Onions
  • Lime Wedges
  • Chili Paste

Method of Preparation

  1. In a container or bowl marinade beef in tamari and chili paste – set aside.
  2. In a large stock pot heat oil over medium heat.
  3. Add garlic, turmeric, ginger, and Thai chili peppers, cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add carrots and mushrooms, and cook for an additional 3 – 5 minutes.
  5. Next, add shredded cabbage, bok choy (white parts), summer squash, liquid broth packets and water. Bring to a simmer
  6. Add in bok choy tops and sorghum noodles, continue to simmer until noodles are soft but not over done, about 10 minutes.
  7. In a small pan heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat.
  8. Once the oil is nice and glossy and moves easily around the pan, add steak.
  9. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side, depending on the thickness (you want a nice sear but not cooked throughout as it will finish cooking in the soup).
  10. Remove steak from pan, and let rest.
  11. Thinly slice steak against the grain.
  12. Ladle the soup into four bowls, top with 3 oz of sliced steak and any additional toppings mentioned above (optional)
  13. Serve immediately

This recipe is gluten-free and dairy free and can easily be made vegetarian!