Monday, February 15, 2010

Recipe #3: Vegetable Stock

My primary New Year's resolution this year was to make 25 new recipes during 2010. I don't cook much, and I'd like to end the year with at least ten or fifteen new things I can make. Since I'm a fairly new vegetarian and Weight Watchers girl, I want to learn to make some healthy, veggie-heavy dishes that I really like.

The first recipe didn't turn out well. The second was delicious. Yesterday I set about the third.

I began with my new vegetarian cookbook Mom bought me for Christmas and the new cookbook holder Andrew bought me for my birthday. I had a picture of this, but the blog has deleted it. Please use your pretend eyes. It's very pretty.

Then I cut up a bunch of vegetables, mixed them with olive oil and minced garlic, and roasted them for 45 minutes.


Then I cooked the vegetables with a bunch of stuff--white wine, soy sauce, fresh parsley and thyme, lots of water, black peppercorns, etc.--for another 45 minutes or so. I was supposed to cook them until the vegetables were very soft.

Then I strained it, squishing the vegetables to get all the juice out I could. The resulting broth is something entirely different from what I usually use out of the rectangular cardboard carton.

I didn't add any salt and used low sodium soy sauce, and I'm glad on both counts. It's extremely flavorful. It was supposed to make three quarts, but only made two. (Did I simmer it too long? I'm sure I measured the water correctly.) My plan is to freeze it in one cup chunks and then use a cup of vegetable broth and one cup of water in soup recipes.

I'm pleased with it. I'll know more, of course, once I use it in a recipe. I'm thinking I need to make the bell pepper soup that I make fairly regularly since it will be easy to tell how the broth affected it.

I'm wondering, and someone who actually cooks and knows about these things needs to chime in with her/his opinion, if I could cut the vegetables into smaller chunks initially, do everything I did above, and then after the straining step put the vegetables back into the cast iron dutch oven with water, more spices, tomato juice, and chopped tomatoes and make a vegetable soup. It seemed like a terrible shame to just throw away all those lovely vegetables, but the recipes had said to not even bother peeling the onions. I think with a little bit more prep work I could end up with vegetable broth AND vegetable soup.

Another thing I wondered is if I could lighten it up by not using all the extra virgin olive oil the recipe calls for. He indicated I should use 1/3 cup olive oil on the veggies. I wonder if I could use my olive oil spritzer and really cut down the fat.


1 comment:

  1. Hi Bonnie!
    I love your blog! Personally, I have never made veggie stock so I am impressed. And, I have never been to the places you've been--your trip photos are amazing (snorkling--awesome!). The story of you trying to find veggie foods in New Orleans killed me! I'd love to visit someday, but may have to bring dry roasted vegan food to survive!