In the old days, we took advantage of the whole animal after we killed it and did not eat only the fine meat parts that we usually do today.
From the perspective of the animal it is really stupid not to take advantage of all parts. If we have killed it – we better use it as well.
Apart from that – we also benefit from making use of more parts of the animal – as we can get nutrients not readily available anywhere else.
An easy way to make use of the less “fine” parts of the animal (like head, feet, tale and inner organs) is to make your own sausages, pates and you can even boil your own excellent and nutritious bone broth.
Bone broth will give you some of the very useful gelatine/collagen together with a lot of other beneficial nutrients. Today it is not seen as essential for us, but we experience that many suffer from joint-aches due to worn out cartilage which have the possibility to be repaired from the inside if we add more bone broth to our diet (of course this alone doen’t fix everything, but this is providing basic buildingblock that we cannot build new cartilage without). It is also good for eyes and skin and our digestive system to mention some.
Saving the hull from an organic chicken or marrow and joints from cow and lamb can be a great source to this and if you put the remains it in the freezer after eating the meat, you can sample into a proper batch to boil broth once in a while.
Broth is really great to heat and drink as soup, or have as a seasoning in stews and hot sauces.
What about the benefits of it brings? one is collagen/gelatine (which are basically the same – just different textures)
Collagen is a protein that can be found in many places of your body – predominantly in skin bone and joints. In the joints the majority is found in the cartilage. In the cartilage you can also find a number of (7 different) glucosaminoglycans (GAG) important for our skin, bone and joints. Imagine if you have lived 30-40-50 years without getting this, as was a natural part of the diet earlier chewing from the bones and long cooking of tougher meat parts on their bone. Cartilage builds cartilage, why it is no wonder that we today have problems with joints, autoimmune diseases and inflammations.
Eating jellybeans or pudding is not providing the same benefits and this is probably the most common source for collagen/gelatine today. Gelatine is only providing some parts of the building blocks for skin, joints and bone. Boiling a real bonebroth will provide that as well as the 7 GAGS and much more.
People who have joint problems or arthritis may experience great benefits adding bone broth to their diet in combination with excercise, becoming more mobile and decreasing pain and aches. It is possible to buy glucosamine in the health food store but it only provides one of the 7 GAGs as mentioned before. Boiling broth is therefore a better, more natural and cheaper way to get a complete set of GAG to the joints – and also much tastier!
For those of us with IBS, the broth can also have an improving effect as it generally has a good and healing effect on our sensitive intestines.
Bone broth and collagen/gelatine are also
- Anti-inflammatory and stimulates the immune system positively.
- Good for skin, nails and hair as collagen is a component of these
- It can also be perceived to have beneficial properties for those with autoimmune diseases.
So – to the fun part – how do you make this good healthy bone broth?
Start by saving your bone residues in the freezer instead of throwing them away. Everything does not have to be from the same type of animal.
Collect a few different vegetables/root vegetables and, for example, white pepper and bay leaves and you are ready to boil bone broth.
The other day I cooked about 8 dl of wonderfully fragrant broth based on the following ingredients:
- 800g beef/leg bones
- 7 white peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 dl red wine
- 1 parsnip
- 1 piece celeriac
- 2 carrots
- 1 small leek
- 1 yellow onion
- 2.5 l water
- I started by putting the frozen bone scraps with meat sludge in a casserole and pouring boiling water on so that the bones were covered. (that was 2.5 liters of water).
- Made it boil and added white pepper, bay leaves and red wine.
- Cooked under a lid for about 90 minutes. Next, I added coarsely divided vegetables and root vegetables boiling all together under a lid for 3.5 hours (i.e. a total of 5 hours of cooking) – during this time the most delightful scent spread both indoors and outdoors. It was amazing 🙂
Afterwards i sifted the broth through a fine-meshed sieve and let the clean broth boil down to about 8 dl ( that was another 90 minutes of boiling without the lid on)
During that time, a couple of times i removed the film building on the surface. Finally, I placed the broth cold (not freezing) to settle and cool off over night. The next day I removed the fat cap and put the broth in bags and into the freezer.
A little footnote – I chose to make my broth without added salt for it to be neutral in taste. I can then add the quantities needed when I use the broth no matter how i choose to use it.