Waste not, want not. Take every opportunity to turn left overs and the scraps from carving meat into broth and stock. The turkey carcass after Thanksgiving, the bone from a roast or that steak, wings, scraps, what’s left over from that deli rotisserie chicken when you are finally done picking at it – these are all perfect for boiling down into a rich, nutritious stock. Be sure to include any bones.
Don’t neglect your vegetable drawer. Throw in that wilted lettuce and those rubbery carrots. Use the ends and peels of onions, mushroom bits, the stem ends cut off of tomatoes or peppers, and the discards trimmed from that bunch of celery. Throw it all in with the meat to boil, or cook them down separately for vegetable broth.
- Scraps, ends and bits
- peelings, rubbery carrots, wilted celery and lettuce
- water to cover
- salt and pepper to taste
- herbs if you want – sage, tarragon and parsley can be good choices
Put your scraps in a large stock pot, cover with water and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and simmer for an hour or so. Season to taste with salt, pepper and appropriate herbs (I am fond of sage, tarragon and parsley, depending upon what meat is being boiled).
Allow to cool and pour through a strainer into another container to remove the chunks and bones. For added clarity, strain a second time through cloth. Put it in the refrigerator to chill over night and use a spoon to skim the fat off. The fat can be saved for cooking or discarded, according to your preference. At this point I usually scoop the broth out with a measuring cup and pour it into labeled freezer bags in 2 cup batches, which I freeze for future use.