Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Vegetable Broth - Vegan

The weather is getting cooler here in Seattle, and starting to feel like Fall. It makes me a little sad to know that my vegetable garden's growing season is getting close to the end, but it also makes me a little happier since Fall and Winter are great seasons to cook nice&hearty soups. I just made my first batch of vegetable broth for this fall season. Yes, you can buy vegetable broth from the store and it's more convenient, but just like anything else, homemade ones are better and healthier than the store-bought ones.

What goes in your body (Vegan):
  • 5 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 small onions (about 1.5 pounds), coarsely chopped
  • 4 small carrots (about 8 ounces), peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 6 celery stalks (about 8 ounces), coarsely chopped
  • 1 garlic head, cloves separated, crushed with the flat side of a knife, and peeled
  • 12 cups water
  • 12 springs flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tbsp fresh whole thyme leaves (or 2 tsp dried thyme leaves)
  • 2 large bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste
You are going to:
  1. In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add onions, carrots, celery, and garlic, tossing to coat with oil. Cook covered to keep the flavor of the vegetables in the pot, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have softened, 15-20 minutes.

  2. Add water, parsley, thyme, and bay leaves to the pot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 2 hours. Remove from heat and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Cover and let the broth rest for 1 hour.

  3. Strain the broth through a fine-meshed strainer into another pot. (Optional: Line the strainer with a cheesecloth and strain the broth again for smoother broth.)
 Secrets from the chef:
  • While straining, press down on the cooked vegetables with the back of a wooden spoon to extract the liquid and get more broth out of them.
  • Set aside the amount you use within a week and freeze the remaining broth. As I mentioned in earlier post, I use empty 'Fleischmann's' containers (measures one cup) to freeze broth for later use. You can also freeze the broth in ice cube trays and pop the frozen cubes into freezer bags for smaller quantities. (Avoid freezing entire batch in one container unless you are going to feed an army.)
  • I save the vegetables (but no herbs) from the stock-making for later cooking. Most of the flavor and nutrition have been drained from them, but they still have a good amount of fiber and makes a good filler for some recipes. For example, you can mash them into mashed potatoes. (I will post a Tortilla Soup recipe tomorrow using the vegetables.)
Bon appétit!


  1. i'd love to make my own broth! thanks for sharing this recipe!

  2. Thanks, Kelli. I hope you'll like it! You can also throw leafy part of celery and carrot as well. I don't chop up leafy part because it's easier to take them out before straining.