Bone broth V stocks

bone broth

Bone broth V stock made simple.

(Don’t worry vegans, I’ve catered for you here)

Gut health has become really popular of late, which is a wonderful thing, especially when you consider that our gut has as many receptors in it as our brain!  Isn’t that amazing!  Because of this, you may hear many practitioners refer to the gut as the “second brain”, with gut health also being a major focus in any natural health protocol. Coming into winter, gut health often becomes more important because of the role it plays in supporting our immune system.

One of the things that repeatedly crops up for gut health is bone broth. So, what is it exactly?  Is it the same as stock?  Well, sometimes the two are referred to interchangeably in cooking, though there is a huge difference when it comes to health.   To start with, both broth and stock are made on a base of bones (and sometimes meat), water, vegetables and seasoning, but this is where the similarities end.

Stock is simmered for a short period of time (slow cooked between 3 and 4 hours) and is a great way to flavour food and use the odds and ends in the fridge. Stock may yield a small amount of gelatin, depending on the bones used. Once you have finished cooking your stock, you should be able to lift out the bones.

Bone broth is a nutritional powerhouse and is made similarly to broth, though it is typically slow cooked for a much longer period of time (8-24 hours).  Because the purpose of bone broth is to extract beautiful fats, collagen and gelatin, it’s important to use the right bones.  Bones with large joints, chicken necks and feet etc. are all ideal for making bone broth. For a well rounded flavour to your bone broth, ensure that you rub the bones with salt and roast them for at least 30 minutes before adding to the slow cooker.  Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is also a really important ingredient due to the way it draws the nutrients out from the bones. Once the bone broth has finished cooking you will find that the bones will disintegrate easily when squeezed gently.  You should also be able to see a visible layer of fat and gelatine once the broth has cooled! I often have to crack mine apart with a knife so I can get to the broth underneath.  Because we are absorbing such concentrated levels of all the lovely nutrients bone broths provide us, it’s essential to buy the best quality bones you can afford.

For a simple bone broth recipe, click here

So, why is it good for us?

Bone broths are a rich source of minerals, protein, gelatin, collagen, healthy fat, glycine and proline.

Glycine is an amino acid that is used to support the natural detox processes, promotes digestion and gastric acid production, assists with the synthesis of bile salts, haemoglobin and other chemicals that occur naturally.  Glycine has even been used in the treatment of cancer, stroke and schizophrenia.

Proline is used for the production of collagen and cartilage, so is a great addition to the diet for those who want to remain youthful looking.  The effects of proline are particularly effective when coupled with vitamin C.

Gelatin is often used to facilitate good digestive health, and just like proline, is great for skin health. 

So, if you’re wanting to improve your overall wellness this winter, bone broth may be an option worth exploring.

Peace, love and wellness,

Mandah xo

Bone Broth

Bone Broth

I hadn’t originally intended to publish this photo, so please excuse the presentation.  It’s a great example of what a cooled bone broth should look like. 

Bone broth recipe

With beef bones, sprinkle a little salt on them and roast in the oven for half an hour prior to using in bone broth. For chicken broth, just throw them in the pot. I used a chicken carcass, some necks and feet (creeped me out, but they’re full of nourishing gelatin).

Place roasted bones in slow cooker on low and cover with filtered water.

2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar

Generous handful of sea salt or Himalayan salt –  should taste like the ocean (NOT table salt – throw that in the bin)

The rest can be altered according to what your preferences are.

1 heaped tablespoon of crushed garlic.

Handful of chopped continental parsley.

1 heaped teaspoon paprika.

1 heaped teaspoon turmeric.

You may add vegetables if desired, though I prefer to add the broth to what I’m cooking, not the other way around.

Add more water to slow cooker to ensure everything is covered and allow to simmer for 24 hours (you can do for only 12 hours if you have a glutamate issue).

You may need to add a little more water during the cooking time, but not too much, as you don’t want this to be diluted.

Once cooked, carefully remove bones from the broth (they may crumble).

Place broth in jars and allow to cool. You will notice a layer forms on top, this is fat and/gelatin (depending on the quality of your bones). DON’T THROW THIS AWAY! It’s excellent for cooking – packed full of flavour and nutrients.

This broth can be consumed as a soup or added to other foods as a stock.

NB. Please buy the best quality bones you can afford. I recommend organic, and crass fed for cattle is a must. This is especially important as you will be consuming everything that was stored in the animal’s bones. Most of us would prefer to avoid added hormones and antibiotics!