Stock is basically a flavoured water preparation. It forms the basis of many dishes, particularly soups and sauces. Stock is made by simmering various ingredients in water. A great quality stock can turn a normal risotto from normal to spectacular. It takes very little time to make and if you grow your own vegetables its a great use of the not so perfect pickings form the patch.
This stock recipe is a traditional southern Italian brodo (broth) that is a spectacular base for a vege risotto.
- 1 Celery stalk
- A small peeled white onion
- A small clump of fresh parsley
- A large peeled carrot
- About 10 peppercorns whole
- Any leftover vegetable pieces, the bottom parts of asparagus are ideal
- A peeled garlic clove crushed roughly with your knife
- Two teaspoons of sea salt
- One bay leaf. [if you dont have a fresh bay leaf use about 3 dried ones]
- 6 cups of water, this is about 1.5 liters
Place all of the ingredients into a large pot and pour in the water. Bring the pot to the boil then put the lid on and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Enjoy a decent quality Scotch Whiskey and soda while the pot simmers for around 30 minutes.
Strain the pot through a colander ensuring that you remove all of the vegetable pieces. You should be left with about 5 cups of stock all up. Use the stock as required.
Make it in bulk and freeze it in ice cube trays or bottle it, refrigerate and use with in about two weeks.