Recipe by Sarah B
MONEY SAVED: $5/quart of organic veggie broth x 4 = $20
“I was first inspired to freeze my veggie scraps for stock by Bryant Terry, in his book Vegan Soul Kitchen.
I haven’t paid for vegetable stock in years. I make my own stock out of vegetable scraps leftover from cooking other dishes. This method turns what would have been compost into a plant-based umami-rich base for soups, and doesn’t produce any packaging waste. Making your own stock also allows you to control the amount of salt – I don’t salt my stock at all, knowing salt will be added later when I cook with it. Stock-making has become a quarterly routine for our household, as three months is about how long it takes us to use up our stock and save enough scraps for the next batch.”
Label a gallon freezer bag for stock scraps and put it in your freezer. Each time you cook with vegetables, place your scraps in the bag and stick them back in the freezer.
Ideal vegetable scraps include:
Carrot and parsnip ends and peels
Onion skins and ends
Cauliflower and cabbage cores and leaves
Any sad and wilted individuals from the bottom of your veggie crisper
Optional herbs and spices:
2 Bay leaves
1 small Head garlic, cloves separated and lightly crushed
Fresh herbs (such as parsley, thyme, oregano)
Dried mushrooms (such as shitake or porcini)
Once the bag is full, it’s time to make stock! This should be enough to make 3-4 quarts of stock.*
Empty the bag of frozen veggie scraps into a large stock pot, then add enough water to cover them. Add your choice of herbs and spices at this point. Heat on high until the stock comes to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Let simmer for 45-60 minutes, pressing down the veggies and stirring occasionally. The longer it simmers, the more concentrated your flavor will be.
Turn off the heat, and let the pot cool for at least an hour to develop even more flavor. Once cooled, strain the veggie scraps by pouring the stock through a strainer into a second pot or large bowl. Squeeze the scraps with your hands or press down on them with a spoon to release as much liquid and flavor as possible. Once all the veggies have been strained to your satisfaction, discard them in the compost.
The stock can now be used immediately, or poured into a mix of pint and quart freezer containers for later use. Be sure to label the containers with the contents and date.
Lastly, put a new bag in the freezer to start saving scraps for your next batch!
*If you are like me and prefer to do things in large quantities, wait until you have two gallon bags. This will make about 6-8 quarts of stock.