What is Bone Broth
Bone broth is just that: Broth made from bones—beef bones, chicken bones, turkey bones, pork bones—even fish bones. Broth is basically liquid that has meat cooked in it.
Why it’s good for you & the Paleo Connection
The Paleo diet focuses on eating only foods our ancestors ate, basically, the basics. Think meat, fish, vegetables, and fruit. But no dairy, grains or processed foods. This diet’s focus on protein and meat has helped to shine a spotlight on bone marrow (the soft, fatty tissue inside the bone cavity), and all of its health benefits, helping to make “bone broth” a little bit trendy.
Yet, both bone marrow and broth have been used in cooking for centuries and touted for the health benefits they offer. Bone Marrow is rich in nutrients, including ready-to-digest forms of zinc, calcium, iron, and phosphorous (which amongst other things is critical to the formation of healthy bones). Bone marrow also contains collagen and is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, lipids, and Vitamin A. Combined, the nutrients, amino acids and minerals found in bone marrow are thought to boost immunity, aid in digestion, and support hormone function, amongst other benefits. In short, bone marrow packs a punch on the health front.
How to Make Bone Broth
4 pounds bones— save bones from meat you cook or ask for them at the meat counter. Mix bones with a lot of marrow with bones with some meat on them such as ribs, knuckles, neck bones, oxtails. The more you mix bones, the more flavorful the broth.
12 cups water (different recipes suggest cider vinegar (1 tbsp)—thought to draw out the nutrients from the bones—wine, or other flavor-enhancing liquids)
Vegetables and herbs to your liking. Try:
1 clove garlic chopped
1 yellow onion chopped in quarters
2 peeled carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 stalks celery cut into 1-2-inch pieces
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon pepper or 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. oregano
2 bay leafs
To make your broth, place ingredients in a large pot or slow cooker. Fill pot with water until bones and veggies are covered by a few inches (at least 12 cups). Add cider and herbs. Start simmering (meaning, cook on low heat). Simmer, simmer, and simmer some more, for hours, even days. The longer the broth simmers, the richer the flavor. At a minimum, simmer the bones for at least 12 hours and on average 24-hours is what we shoot for.
The broth is done when it’s rich and flavorful to your liking. Remove from heat and strain the broth. Save any extra meat bits that come off of the bones, to be used in other recipes. Chill the broth. If it becomes jelly-like when it is in the fridge don’t worry, it will become liquid again when you reheat it. As it chills, a layer of fat may form on the top of the broth, this can be easily scraped off. Broth can also be put in the freezer.
Tip: Roast the bones at 450 F and veggies for 20 minutes before placing them into the pot to simmer. Roasting the bones can enhance flavor and bring a darker hue to the overall broth.