Simple Vegetable Stock
Leftover vegetables? No problem! Turn them into a delicious vegetable stock in no time!
6 Stalks Celery
6 Petite Carrots (what I used) or 4 Regular Carrots
1 Large Yellow Onion (you can cut in half and leave the skin on or remove it, this is simply personal preference!)
6-8 Button Mushrooms
8 Cloves Garlic
8-10 Sprigs Fresh Parsley
1t Dried Thyme (use fresh if you have this available)
2T Olive Oil
1. Cut vegetables into 2" chunks - if you're not exact, its ok! The vegetables will be discarded in the end so perfect cuts here are NOT important
2. Heat 2T olive oil over medium heat in large stock pot
3. When oil is hot, add in your cut vegetables and let them sit 1-2 minutes, until they become aromatic. This will help your vegetables open up a little bit, creating a deeper, more rich flavor
4. Add your fresh parsley, thyme, and salt to pot
5. Let the vegetables sweat 1-2 minutes more
6. Add 6-8 cups of water to your pot - more water will result in a thinner stock, less water will result in a richer stock
7. Bring pot to low boil, then reduce to low and simmer for 60 minutes (or up to 90 minutes if you have the time). The longer the simmer, the more the flavors will develop.
8. Strain vegetables with a fine mesh strainer into containers, divided evenly
9. Discard vegetables (if you can compost, I highly recommend)
10. Let cool to room temperature before storing in the fridge or freezer
I typically store my stocks / broths in mason jars - just make sure they are completely cooled before sealing. Your stock will keep up to 5 days in the fridge, or around a month in the freezer.
Note - Use whatever vegetables / portions you desire / have available. I am simply providing the above ingredients as a base for a vegetable stock! Other great vegetables for stock are: leeks, fennel, parsnips, bell peppers, kale - any sturdy, non-starchy vegetables. Other spices to include are: bay leaf, whole peppercorns, rosemary, etc.
If you have the space, keep the discards from your vegetables from the past few weeks in the freezer and use them when you have enough for stock -- its a GREAT way to reduce waste.