Friday, February 28, 2014

Food Friday: Bone Broth

Food Friday is my weekly homage to my favorite thing on Earth- FOOD!  I haven't always felt this way.  I used to view food as the enemy.  But no longer!  I love food- it helps me meet my performance goals, nourishes my body, and most importantly keeps me healthy so I can make a difference in this crazy world.  So every Friday I will be posting about one of my favorite foods.  It may be a plant or animal, single ingredient or recipe, or whatever I feel like (hey- it's my blog afterall).
If there is a particular food you would like me to talk about, recommend it in the comments! 

 Bone Broth

Have you heard of the book The 5 Love Languages?  If you haven't, it's about understanding how we receive love.  It may be touch, affirmation, etc.  But I'm here today to propose a 6th Love Language.  And that, my friends, is the language of Bone Broth.

Bone Broth is one of the most nutrient dense foods you can put in your body.  It will keep you nourished, strong, and healthy.  So if someone gave me a bouquet, basket, or little blue box full of Bone Broth, I would know that person loves me from the inside out.  And if I ever give you a Mason Jar full of this elixir...  Whoa.  You're in.

Seriously- these chickens are in Broth Love

Benefits


Bone Broth is considered a traditional super food.  When you slow simmer bones to make broth, you're releasing the nutrients stored deep in the bone and connective tissue of an animal.  Those nutrients include:
  • Generous amounts of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and silica
  • Chocked full of gelatin, which is a super supplement in and of itself:
    • Helps make protein more available to be absorbed by your body
    • Aids in digestion
    • Increases stomach acid which helps your body break down food and therefore absorb nutrients
  • Chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine which are known to help with joint pain
  • Plenty of collagen which helps keep your hair, skin, nails, and joints healthy (PS- it's also said to help reduce cellulite!)
And, there's a reason why Grandma fed you chicken soup when you were sick!  Because of Bone Broth's mineral density, it has an anti inflammatory effect on the body which boosts the immune system!

I really try to get at least a cup of homemade broth in a few days a week.  If I'm feeling run down or stressed, I try to add it in every day as a preventative measure.


Shopping


Ok, here is the catch.  When I'm talking about Bone Broth, I am NOT referring to the boxes of chicken stock at your local grocery store.  That stuff has a high probability of just being colored and flavored water.  So I encourage you to make your own!  It's cheaper, more nutrient dense, and tastes WAY better.  Plus- it's easy.


You can use leftover bones from a chicken or turkey carcass or go straight to your butcher and ask for soup bones.  
 

Preparing


The great thing about making Bone Broth is that you really can't mess it up.  Toss some bones, garlic, apple cider vinegar, and water in a crock pot and let it cook.  If you want to add some veggies for added flavor or nutrients, chopped carrots, celery, or onion usually work best.  But they are not necessary.

Cooking


Ok, I'm going to blow your mind.  A good Bone Broth should be left in the crock pot for no less than 12 hours, but can be left up to 24 hours.  This slow cooking will pull as many nutrients as possible from the bones.  If you have a good enough bones your broth will be gelatinous when it's cold (I've only been able to achieve this with grassfed beef bones).  This is the nutrient sweetspot.  

video


Seriously, how fun is that?  It's like a Jello Jiggler for nutrition geeks.

Recipe


Like I said above, you really cannot mess up broth.  However, if it's the first time you've made it, there are a lot of broth recipes out on the interwebs.  My favorite one is from Diane over at balancebites.com. 

Balanced Bites Bone Broth:


4 Quarts Filtered Water
1.5-2 lbs Beef Knuckle or Marrow Bones (or really, any bones/carcass will do)
The cloves from one whole head of fresh garlic, smashed
2 Tablespoons Bragg's Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

Place all the ingredients in a 6 Quart Crockpot and set to HIGH.  When the stock is boiling reduce the heat to low.  Cook anywhere from 12-24 hours.  The longer it cooks, the more gelatin rich it will become!  Turn off the crock pot and let it cool.  Strain the stock and discard what you skim off.  When the broth cools, you may have fat that separates at the top. You will want to skim and discard that fat.

You can store the Broth in the fridge or freeze it for later use (portion it out before you freeze it).  You can even freeze it in ice cube trays and thaw a little at a time (this is great to saute veggies in for added nutrients and flavor). 

You can drink it straight, but most people use it to replace store bought stock.  This will make a thicker and more flavorful broth than you would buy.  You can dilute your broth to your tastes- I like my soup a little stronger, so I usually do a 1:1 Borth/Water ratio, but many people perfer 1:2.


What do you think?  Do you make your own broth? What's your favorite recipe?
  

2 comments:

  1. Hi Kelsey,

    New to your site, and I like! This broth recipe looks awesome, and I will for sure try it soon! Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Gwen! Enjoy the broth! It will nourish you from the inside out! :)

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