I recently made some basic vegetable stock which is perfect for a rainy day when you want a warm, savoury drink. Not only that, but it is also a great addition to soups and sauces.
I’ve always thought that rainy days are a perfect time to make stock. The steamy, fragrant kitchen warms the soul, and the effort generally ends up giving you several days worth of stock which makes for easy meals throughout the week.
This recipe can be put together in a matter of minutes, and the soup that you make with the stock will have depth, body and character unmatched by water-based soups. Vegetable stock is more subtle in flavour than meat-based stock, so top-notch ingredients and attention to seasoning is essential!
Start by peeling in roughly chopping one yellow onion, two leeks, four carrots, and four celery sticks. Also separate one bulb of garlic and smash the cloves with the flat edge of your knife. In addition, take two apples and slice them into four pieces each.
Next, heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large pot, and add the onions, leeks, carrots, celery, salt and four bay leaves. Sauté the mixture for five minutes, stirring often.
Once five minutes has passed, it is time to add all of the remaining ingredients. Those remaining ingredients are as follows: 1 tablespoon of whole black peppercorns, 1 tablespoon of coriander seeds, 1 tablespoon of coarse salt, a few sprigs of fresh thyme, a few sprigs of fresh parsley, a few sprigs of fresh sage, and 20 cups of cold water. I prefer to use filtered water, but tap water should be fine, too assuming you trust your local water!
Once you’ve added in all of those ingredients, including the water, bring everything to a boil. Once you have done that, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 45 minutes. Strain and cool if you are not using the stock immediately. You can store the stock in the refrigerator for up to three days, or in the freezer for up to two months.
This excellent recipe will yield approximately 14 cups of stock. Here’s one final helpful hint: avoid adding to your vegetable stock any broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, beats, peppers or asparagus. Adding these will typically give the stock a very distinctive/strong taste, which probably is not going to be very enjoyable. Other than these vegetables pretty much everything else is fair game!
I hope you enjoy it!