Every Thursday when I walk into my home with my baskets and jute bags full of fresh market produce, I make this broth. Like clockwork. I set my bags down, grab the Kilner jam pan (who knew it would be just perfect for big batches of stock and sauces) and fill it with 6 litres of filtered water. And because I have now been doing this every single week for the past two years, I chop veggies on automaton, toss them in the water and get the heat going. By the time I make myself a cup of coffee and finish putting away the veggies and other produce from my market bags, I have 6 litres of delicious nutrient-rich veggie broth ready to be bottled for a week's supply of fresh nourishing meals. It is essentially stock but I call it broth because broth is supposed to be lighter in taste, something that you can drink straight up.
It is amazing how a simple habit and a bit of discipline can make a huge difference in not only your monthly grocery bills but also in your health. Rewind to a few years ago and a container of all natural, additive free veggie stock was part of my weekly shop. At $4 a pack, it wasn't much. But when you added up 5-6 packs (because that was how much we were using in a month), it amounted to $25-$30 a month. Again, that wasn't much but my only gripe was that it wasn't fresh and I could never bring myself to drink it straight.
So I decided to make a huge batch every week with fresh veggies from the market and see how that worked for us. When I slow simmered my first batch of this veggie broth and tasted it from a cup, I couldn't believe how utterly delicious and clean it was. I realised then that I would never be able to go back to the store bought stock.
What I love is that I am in control of what goes into the broth. I have always loved boosting the nutrition factor of my dishes with anti-inflammatory and gut healthy ingredients. And there is loads of that in this vibrant broth. Leek, ginger, garlic and turmeric are absolutely amazing ingredients. Besides being phenomenal sources of vitamins and minerals, they enhance your gut flora and maintain a healthy heart.
This broth is an excellent way to get more of these vegetables and spices in your body. Try replacing your afternoon cup of tea with a hot cup of this beautiful broth a couple of times during the week and see how amazing you feel. Or heat the broth and add raw sliced veggies (cauliflower, beans, carrot, spring onions, snow peas and some salmon or tofu), top with a dash of soy sauce or miso and a hot chilli sauce. One of my go-to satisfying quick lunches!
In the past few months, I have started using filtered water for drinking (mostly) and for cooking. We just use this Brita jug and fill bottles with the filtered water as and when required. The water tastes much nicer, softer, sweeter and crisper after filtering. And it makes a huge difference to the taste of the broth as well. The Kilner jam pan is fantastic because it works well on my induction cooktop and has volume measurements marked on the inside (super useful!).
The combination of vegetables below yields a very umami tasting broth. I often add cauliflower greens and dried porcini or chanterelle mushrooms in addition to the veggies below. If I am freezing the broth, I like to do so in different sized containers. 2 litre containers are useful when I want to make soup. 600ml containers are great when I need stock for sauces, stir-fries or curries.
If you manage to work this little broth recipe in your weekly routine, I would love to hear your feedback and thoughts in the comments below. You can also try out this Turmeric Chicken Broth (that my boys love and often sip on cold mornings before going to school) or this rich tasting Mushroom Broth. And here are some recipes you can use the broth/stock in
Thai Red Curry Tofu Soup With Sweet Potato Noodles
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MARKET VEGGIE BROTH
- 2 leeks, washed and sliced (white only)
- 3 carrots, washed and chopped
- 2 red onions, quartered
- 3 celery sticks, washed and chopped
- 4 parsley sprigs, washed and chopped
- 6 thyme sprigs
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 1 inch ginger piece, chopped
- 1 inch fresh turmeric root, chopped
- 100 g button mushrooms
- 10 peppercorns
- 4 bay leaves
- salt to taste, usually 2-3 teaspoons
- 6 litres filtered water
- Place all ingredients in a deep 8-litre sauce pot or canning pot. Bring to a rolling boil on high. Reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes until vegetables are tender.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. Strain into clean and dry glass jars and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Alternatively, strain into freezer safe containers. Cover and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
I have no efficient freezer, am retired and live alone, so I can't see myself using the stock in liquid form before it spoils, but no problem... I will do a dehydrated version! Same ingredients, but I'll dry them in my Biochef Arizona 9 shelf, grind them to make a stock powder, and see if it is better than the standard veggie stock powder on UK supermarket shelves (Marigold brand). I think it will be, just like my homemade hummus with paprika and cumin, and my sauerkraut, beat the shop-bought versions hands down, and are much cheaper of course. My recent results making kale powder and dried beetroot have been great, so I am optimistic I can make a long lasting stock powder, based on your lovely ingredients, that will rock. I love making soup and am trying to eat less meat. I'll let you know how it turns out, Sneh 🙂
Trevor, that does sound like a brilliant idea. You have inspired me to try it as well. I am going to experiment with my dehydrator in the holidays. Let me know how you go? Thanks!
Simple and beautiful Reciepe.Thanks so much for the recipe.
Thank you for your answer.
I agree about not using the left over vegetables. I have now made the broth and indeed the veggies look very unappetizing.
What a simply beautiful recipe! I am always wanting to make my own veggie broth (the only option where I live is bouillon cubes, otherwise), but was never sure exactly what to add to get maximum flavor. I will definitely be trying this out after my next grocery haul! x
Tried this recipe today and absolutely loved it! It was a pleasure to cook as well as sip. This will come in really handy on my intermittent fasting days!
An added bonus was that my 7 year old loved it after school today (cold rainy day in Queensland). She went straight to the kitchen to check out what the yummy aromas were. Thanks so much for the recipe and the ideas to turn it into simple soups!
I wonder what can be done with the veggies after making the broth. I have neither chickens nor dog and it seems like such a waste to just throw them out.
Could I perhaps puree them and use as a base for a sauce for pasta or rice?
You could chuck them in a compost heap if you have one? I totally understand the feeling of not wanting to waste anything, but to be honest these vegetables have little to no nutrition value after being cooked up in the broth (you will see that the colour has changed, dirty coral carrots, sea green celery etc... which means the vegetables have done all that they could). All the flavour and nutrients are in the broth. The veggies are just used up scraps at this point. You could puree them and use them as a base for pasta or even a veggie burger but you would be better off using fresh ingredients for your new dish so you could get more flavour and nutrients in that dish. Hope that helps.
So true Eha! I really really love drinking this and using up fresh produce ensures that the taste is fresh and full of nutrients. Plus the leftover "stock" mulch gets fed to the chickens (after filtering onions and leek) or added to the compost heap. Hope you are well and hope you love this if you make it 🙂 x
Oh how I needed this reminder! Used to do this after most shopping days but the speed and complexity of life have led the habit into respite. I SO needed the wakeup call! OK, for quite awhile I did it Hulya's way and naturally there is a saving and a good feeling one has not wasted the 'possible'. However, methinks Ill go back to using produce fresh from the market as there would be an inevitable loss of nutrients in the frozen method and methinks that very pure taste might be missing: still good for when vegetable broth is needed for cooking, but not so if one wants a delightful; glass of it. The only ingredient I have not thought to use is mushroom: must try!!
So true Eha! I really really love drinking this and using up fresh produce ensures that the taste is fresh and full of nutrients. Plus the leftover “stock” mulch gets fed to the chickens (after filtering onions and leek) or added to the compost heap. Hope you are well and hope you love this if you make it x
Veggie broth is something I use extensively but I never shop for it. I have two big containers in my freezer -freezer bags would do as well- and whenever I cook veggies, which is very often, I spare all the peels, ends, stalks, tips, buttons etc. and gather them in my boxes. When they are full, I pop them in a big pot with 3 liters of water and the rest is same with yours. If I think I don't have enough carrots peels, I'll pop in two chopped carrots etc. But I think it's practical, easy and a good way to minimize the waste. After I strain the broth, the remains are added into the dogs food:)
I like your idea of freezing veggie off cuts for future stock making sessions. I am usually not left with any offcuts as we have 6 chickens and kitchen scraps get fed to them. The remains of this stock (minus the onions and leeks) are also fed to the chickens. They love it. I am going to freeze my cauliflower stocks now after reading your comment. Thanks for the inspiration! x