Thursday, June 6, 2013

Vegetable Broth: Free Food!

Vegetable broth is made with all the scraps you've got hanging around the fridge, and it's very useful, since it’s the basis for various Poverty Meals.

So it's a great deal, and it's also really easy to make.


  • An onion or two (let’s face it – nearly every one of my recipes starts with an onion or two)(and yes, feel free to use wild onions if it’s summer!)
  • Whatever vegetables or scraps of veggies you have around.  This can include any of the following: carrots, celery, lettuce, broccoli, asparagus ends, green beans, greens, peas & pea pods, potatoes, potato peelings – basically whatever.  When cutting up veggies for other reasons, throw the scraps in a ziplock; keep it in the freezer.  Then when it comes time to make broth, just toss in these scraps.  No need to thaw.
  • If you don’t have scraps, you can use whatever vegetables you like.  You want maybe four or five cups of chopped-up vegetables?  But don’t get neurotic.  Whatever you have will do.
  • Also salt, pepper, a bay leaf if you have one, some rosemary if you have that -- neither the bay leaf or the rosemary are necessary.  
  • Garlic if you have some.  Again, not vital
  • Some kind of oil – bacon grease is my favorite, or olive oil if we’re being vegan; but any oil will do

Cut up the onions and cook them a little in the oil.

Cut up the rest of the vegetables if they’re not already scraps.  Cook them in the oil a bit too.  Then add the spices and stir some. 

Add about ten cups of water – maybe a little more if you have a lot of vegetables, less if you have fewer.

Stir well, bring to a boil.

Lower the heat to a simmer and let it simmer for about half an hour.

Cover it, turn the heat off, let it sit for about an hour.

Strain out the veggies (I put them in the compost pile at this point) and separate your broth into quart jars.

The broth can be frozen if you use those plastic Ziploc containers.

What to do with this broth? 
  • Add noodles and veggies and you’ve got a cheap filling soup.
  • Add potatoes and some milk and you’ve got potato soup.
  • Add rice and chicken and you’ve got chicken soup.

Your possibilities are endless!

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