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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Benefits of Bone Broth

Good broth will resurrect the dead. 
~South American Proverb

Bone Broth - it doesn't sound very appetizing but stay with me for a moment.  Bone broth has been resurrected as a healing and healthy food to add to your diet regularly.  Of course, it is a practice as old as cooking itself. 

What benefits could be there be for you?  There is a lot of nutrition locked inside those bones whether from chicken, lamb, fish or beef.  When the bones are long-simmered, nutrients like magnesium, potassium, calcium, amino acids and collagen all become accessible to your body.  Getting this nutrition is as easy as sipping a warm mug of broth - maybe even in place of (at least one of) your cups of coffee. :)   If you can't see yourself sipping a cup of bone broth, you can use it in your other cooking.  Replace the water for making rice with the broth for example.  

Benefits that have been reported from bone broth are varied but all are linked back to the nutrition in the broth and how easy it is to digest.  There are reports that the broth can help leaky gut, joint pain, boost the immune system and decrease inflammation in the body. Regardless of the reported benefits, a cup of this broth is warm and nourishing and it just feels good for you! 

The broth is exceedingly easy to make these days especially if you have a crock-pot.  Here is how to make it:  

Bone Broth 
  • If using chicken:  2-3 pounds of chicken bones (farm-raised, free-range preferred)

  • If using lamb:  about 2 pounds of lamb bones

  • If using fish:  3 or 4 whole carcasses (including heads) of a non-oily fish

  • If using beef:  about 4 pounds of beef bones preferably roasted at 350 degrees in the oven until browned
  • Vegetables such as onions, carrots, celery
  • Herbs such as thyme, parsley, bay leaf, and peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar  
  • Water to cover

Place ingredients in crock pot and cook on low for at least 12 hours and up to 72 hours.  You want the bones to become soft and crumbly.  When that happens, you know you have extracted as much nutrition from them as possible.  
After cooking, strain broth to remove solids. Refrigerate and the fat will rise to the top to be skimmed off.  What remains is clear broth.  It may be jelled which shows that collagen was extracted - that is a very good sign! 

The broth can be sipped from a cup, used as a base for soups or for cooking liquid when you would normally use water. Aim for at least a cup a day. 

If this post has piqued your interest in this old, nutritious cooking method, I encourage you to read Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon which delves into many other traditional foods and cooking methods from around the world.  It is a book that I refer to quite often.  

I'm so glad you stopped by to visit today.  I hope you pull out your crock-pot and give bone broth a try. Tomorrow, I'll share my experiences with another old, traditional food:  Kefir, a cultured milk product.  I hope to see you then! 

Peace be with you, 

Star Schipp 

This post may contain affiliate links which means if you make a purchase using one of those links, I may receive compensation at no extra cost to you.  It is a great way to support your favorite hobby farm blogger.  Thank you!   

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