Broth is one of the simplest things to make, almost as simple to make as toast. The idea is to boil the life out of animal bones with the help of apple cider vinegar and seasonings. There are loads of variations on this basic recipe and a few ways to prepare it. Using a crockpot is the simplest and hands off and then there is the gumbo size pot placed on the stovetop . You continually add boiling water and let it simmer for longer. I am a huge fan of bone broth and as Marcus stated in his post a few winters ago, it is loaded with benefits.
Setting yourself up for several weeks of broth heaven won’t’ cost you more than $50. And you know where your bones and ingredients are coming from (hopefully grass few cows and local produce). For a basic broth I use a combination of knuckles, necks and bones. Too many marrow bones can cause your broth to be oily. Apple cider vinegar is essential for any kind of broth adventure. The acidity of the vinegar draws out the beneficial minerals from the bones. From here, one can get really creative. I made two batches. One was strictly the bone combo, ACV, salt, pepper and onion. The other I went down the Vietnamese route and attempted to recreate the comforting spicy warmth of Vietnamese pho.
Pho is basically bone broth with the following spices added. Whole star anise, whole cloves, corriander pods, cinnamon sticks, fish sauce, garlic, ginger and green onions. I placed all of the spices in a cheese cloth satchel (which can be purchased from a cooking store). One of the first step is to blanche the bones. Basically boil the bones for about 10 minutes or so to get rid of the surface impurities and then dump that water.
Refill the pot with new water and add the spices, ginger and onions. Let it simmer down for anywhere from 8-24 hours. Boom! “Phake Pho”.