Bone Broth – A Rediscovered Superfood!

Guess what steaming, hot liquid a popular take out window in New York is serving? And it’s not coffee. You guessed it – bone broth! The establishment, Brodo, has made simple, homemade broth a new health trend. And for good reason!

Until recent times, using all the parts of an animal in cooking was the normal way of life. If a person wanted chicken broth, they made it from chicken bones. They couldn’t go to the nearest grocery store and pick up a can of broth or jar of bullion cubes – which I suspect the majority of American households do more commonly than not. I’m not trying to make anyone feel guilty for taking advantage of a convenient option. Don’t we all occasionally? It’s simply a good way of life to be well informed concerning what goes into our bodies.

The bulk of store bought broths aren’t actually real. They contain meat flavors produced in a lab and monosodium glutamate (MSG). Mercola’s website says the following:

“MSG is one of the worst food additives on the market and is used in canned soups, crackers, meats, salad dressings, frozen dinners and much more. It’s found in your local supermarket and restaurants, in your child’s school cafeteria and, amazingly, even in baby food and infant formula.

MSG is more than just a seasoning like salt and pepper, it actually enhances the flavor of foods, making processed meats and frozen dinners taste fresher and smell better, salad dressings more tasty, and canned foods less tinny.

While MSG’s benefits to the food industry are quite clear, this food additive could be slowly and silently doing major damage to your health.”

To get real bone broth, you can simply make it yourself at home for much cheaper! Here’s an awesome quote from Sally Fallon Morell to inspire us to do this –

“What America needs is healthy fast food and the only way to provide this is to put brothals in every town, independently owned brothals that provide the basic ingredient for soups and sauces and stews. And brothals will come when Americans recognize that the food industry has prostituted itself to short cuts and huge profits, shortcuts that cheat consumers of the nutrients they should get in their food and profits that skew the economy towards industrialization in farming and food processing. Until our diners and carryouts become places that produce real food, Americans can make broth in their own kitchens. It’s the easy way to produce meals that are both nutritious and delicious—and to acquire the reputation of an excellent cook.”

So, let’s look at why bone broth is so beneficial!

* It’s rich in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, silicon and other trace minerals. These nutrients are absorbed easily by our bodies.

* Bone broth’s nutritional value also includes glucosamine and chondroiton – which have been shown to be helpful for arthritis and joint pain.

* It helps promote strong bones.

* Bone broth has an anti-inflammatory effect on our bodies.

* It’s also a support to the immune system.

* It’s filled with gelatin, which is amazing for digestive health and beneficial for a multitude of diseases. Here’s information on gelatin from the Weston A. Price website –

“The French were the leaders in gelatin research, which continued up to the 1950s. Gelatin was found to be useful in the treatment of a long list of diseases including peptic ulcers, tuberculosis, diabetes, muscle diseases, infectious diseases, jaundice and cancer. Babies had fewer digestive problems when gelatin was added to their milk. The American researcher Francis Pottenger pointed out that as gelatin is a hydrophilic colloid, which means that it attracts and holds liquids, it facilitates digestion by attracting digestive juices to food in the gut.”

* Bone broth can help to overcome food allergies. It’s thought that one in five Americans today have a food allergy!

* The collagen and gelatin in bone broth is great for hair, skin and nails.

* Some say it can even be helpful in eliminating cellulite and the appearance of wrinkles ;).

How is this superfood made? Some nutrition seekers add ingredients and steps to the process that make it seem difficult. But I assure you, it is not hard in any way! The terms used for bone broth throughout society can get somewhat confusing. It all has to do with how long the bones are boiled. Here’s the the most common terms and the differences between them –

Broth – This is simmered with meat and bones for 1-2 hours. Broth has a light flavor and is a good source of protein.

Stock – This is made with bones, typically roasted before simmering. It’s generally simmered for 3-4 hours and is a good source of protein and gelatin.

Bone broth – This is made with bones, typically roasted before simmering. It simmers for 6-24 hours. This long period of time allows for not only gelatin from the collagen-filled joints to be released, but also rich minerals from the bones such as glycine and proline.

Now, let’s see how to simply and cheaply make chicken bone broth!

1. Purchase a whole, preferably organic chicken.

2. Roast the chicken with whatever flavors you want. Enjoy the meat with a meal!

3. Remove the majority of the remaining meat and place the chicken carcass in a large pot or crock pot. (I recently heard about using a crock pot for this and am excited to try it!).

4. Add about 3 quarts of cold water to the pot. To be completely honest, I don’t ever really measure. I just fill the pot until the chicken is covered by about 4 inches. Then add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. This helps to draw out more nutrients from the bones.

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* Those are all the ingredients I use. Since I always use a roasted chicken carcass, there’s enough flavor in the bones themselves for my preference. If I happen to have fresh vegetable scraps available, which I happened to for the pictured broth, I throw ’em in the mix. Many people, especially if using a raw chicken, add vegetables such as onion, celery and carrot to add flavor. They also add seasonings such as salt and pepper. If you desire to, throw some other ingredients into the mix at this point!

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5. Preferably, allow the carcass to sit in the water for about an hour.

6. Place the pot on the stove and slowly bring it to a boil over medium-high heat.

7. Bring down to a simmer and skim off the residue that has risen to the top and throw it away. Allow the broth to continue to simmer over low heat for 6-24 hours.

8. Pour all of the contents in the pot through a strainer into another pot. Throw the contents left in the strainer away.

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Either use the broth right away, keep it in the fridge for a few days or freeze it. Frozen broth will last up to a year and can be used for many purposes – soup bases, for boiling rice in or for any of the many recipes that call for a cup chicken broth! If you choose to freeze your bone broth, don’t make the some mistakes I have. Such as pouring the still warm liquid into glass jars and freezing right away. This results in many a cracked jars and ruined broth…

The process for beef and fish broths are very similar. Beef broth requires 12-24 hours of simmering and preferably roasting the bones for 30-60 minutes at 350° beforehand. Fish broth requires only 2-4 hours of simmering.

Enjoy your delicious, soul-warming broth! Not to mention the healthy immune system, digestive system, smooth skin, strong hair and reduced cellulite that comes with it!! Woohoo!

Other sources researched for this article:

http://nourishedkitchen.com/bone-broth/

http://draxe.com/the-healing-power-of-bone-broth-for-digestion-arthritis-and-cellulite/

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/02/23/bone-broth-superfood.aspx

http://nypost.com/2015/01/03/nycs-latest-health-trend-is-a-steaming-cup-of-bone-broth/

http://www.weedemandreap.com/3-ways-heal-food-allergies/

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