What is it with Bone Broth?

This tradition of simmering soup with bones have been around for a long time. I remember the days when Gran used to hawk over a huge pot of soupy goodness, simmering away on a charcoal stove. The main ingredient was always a good amount of meat bones. She would start cooking in the morning and the soup would simmer away for hours. At dinnertime, we would each have a huge helping of soup and it was always the highlight of dinner. When anyone is under the weather, soup was always the first thing she would make for us. “To nourish your body and soul!” she’d say.

In Asia, we have always made stocks and broths with meat bones, with an increasing use of beef bones. In other countries, stocks and broths is the foundation of cooking. There are used in making soups, stews, for preparing sauces and for braising vegetables and meats.

So, what’s the difference between broth, stock and bone broth?

In the food community, you hear a lot about broth, stock and bone broth. Mostly, they are built on the same ingredients and concoction: water, meat or bones (or both) and vegetables.

Skimming off the top foam, sieving and draining are the usual practice for preparing the final soupy goodness.

  • Broth is usually made with meat which may contain a small amount of bones (for example a fresh whole chicken). In most cases, broth is simmered between 45 minutes to 2.5 hours. It is mild in flavour, light but rich in protein.

  • Stock is made with bones and can contain a small amount of meat (like neck bone). We can choose to roast the bones before simmering them as this simple step greatly enhances the flavour. Stock is simmered for a slightly longer amount of time, 3 to 4 hours and has a good source of gelatin.

  • Bone Broth is usually made with bones which have a small amount of meat on them. Bone marrows are the best! We highly recommend that the bones be roasted before using – this greatly enhances the flavour. Bone broths are simmered for a very long period of time – often for 8 hours, and in some cases for up to 24 hours. This helps release the gelatin, nutrients and minerals from collagen-rich joints.

Why is bone broth good for you?

Bone broths are super rich in protein, and can be a source of minerals as well. The minerals from the broth assist with detoxification and help the body recover from the constant onslaught of chemicals and preservatives from other food sources. Bone broth is especially helpful when we have digestive issues as it helps soothes the stomach and digestive system.

Not forgetting that the collagen and minerals from the broth are very good for skin health. The healing effects from bone broth are exceptional. Just like how chicken soup is good for us when we are down with flu!

We will share how to make a beautiful bone broth in our next post, stay tuned!

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