Do you ever feel bad when you throw away veggie scraps, even if they are going into the compost? I know I do. It’s not as if there is anything wrong with the leftover bits of parsley and thyme, or with that one dinky carrot sitting alone in the crisper bin. It would be nice to do something with them, but sometimes we just don’t know what that something should be.
Well, wonder no more! We can turn those scraps into veggie broth!
Most (but not all) veggies can be turned into broth. I got this idea from the Thug Kitchen cookbook.
HOW TO MAKE VEGETABLE BROTH
All you need is a bag that can hold at least six cups of scraps. Keep it in the freezer and throw your scraps into it until it is full. You can use carrot peels, fresh herbs, garlic cloves, mushrooms, greens (such as kale stems), ends of bell peppers and onions, celery, and whatever else you want.
You know how heads of garlic always have a bunch of tiny cloves that are so small they aren’t worth the trouble of peeling and mincing? I like to throw those into the freezer bag too.
Avoid broccoli and brussels sprouts, or use in moderation, as these can add a strong flavour to the broth. This probably goes without saying, but also don’t use anything that is rotting or slimy.
As you can see, I like to use one of those reusable produce bags that are meant for grocery shopping. You can also use a plastic Ziplock freezer bag.
Once your bag is full, fill a large pot with 9 cups of water and add your 6 cups of scraps.
At this point you can add a few bay leaves, 1 teaspoon of salt, and other dried herbs if desired.
Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer uncovered for about one hour. If you want a more concentrated broth, simmer for an additional hour, tasting it until you’re happy with it.
Turn off the heat and allow to cool. Strain the mixture into a bowl.
This next part is optional, so feel free to skip it, but this is what I do. Grab handfuls of the vegetables and squeeze the excess liquid into the bowl of broth. Discard them.
Now pour your broth into containers. If using within the next 5 days, keep them in the fridge. Otherwise, put them in the freezer.
Ta da! Homemade vegetable broth! Now you can feel good about having used all of your produce, AND you got something useful out of it.
Have you made your own broth? What type of scraps do you prefer to use?