Parmesan Broth


We love to make flavorful broths and stocks. We usually save all of our meat bones (chicken, steaks, the whole Thanksgiving turkey!), keep them in the freezer until we have a bunch, and then periodically make a big batch of stock. We keep it in mason jar and use it for the next few weeks to make different soups usually. One of Selim’s favorite tricks is to throw in a Parmesan rind as the stock is cooking. It adds a delicious umami depth of flavor to the stock. Well tonight, after perusing one of Smitten Kitchen’s soup recipes, he decided to just make a Parmesan broth. And it was amazing! This is so flavorful just on it’s own (we ate it plain + a crusty bread to dip in it), but would be a great place to start a soup or sauce! [Side note: the pot you cook in will be all gross and nearly impossible to clean from the residual melty cheesy bits, but it was worth it! Any suggestions??]
Parmesan Broth

(Inspired by Smitten Kitchen)
  • 20 cups water
  • 2 lb Parmesan rinds
  • 1/2 of a large onion, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 2 shallots, cut into 1 in chunks
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt to taste
  1. Bring the water, with all of the ingredients except the salt in it, to a boil. Then reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally for 3-4 hours.
  2. Strain through cheesecloth to remove all of the aromatics and debris. Taste and add salt as needed.
  3. Use as a base for anything you want!

Basic Mixed Poultry Stock

We have a very specific Thanksgiving tradition… We like to steal the turkey bones. All of the bones. We gather them all up like little squirrels to take home. Sounds a little weird, but it’s the best freebie leftover you can grab! Hide those bones away in your refrigerator until you’re ready, and then you can create some stock that puts the ones you buy at the store to shame.

This is mixed poultry stock, not pure turkey stock as we’ve done in the past, because we had the bones of several smoked chicken quarters too. The same principles apply whether you have a whole turkey carcass, a bunch of chicken bones, or a combination of both.

In even better news, making homemade stock is one of the easiest things ever! It sounds a little bit daunting, but it really isn’t. Time consuming? Sort of… It’s a long process, but it’s mostly hands-off.

What You’ll Need

  • A large, deep pot
  • A large bowl
  • Bones
  • Water
  • Colander
  • Large piece of cheesecloth

How You Do It

  1. Place your bones in a large, deep pot.
  2. Cover with water.
  3. Bring to a boil, but then immediately reduce to a simmer. Allow to simmer, uncovered, for 6-8 hours.
  4. Cool, overnight if necessary. Skim fat and debris off the top.
  5. Return to the stove, over low heat. Once warmed through, remove the bones.
  6. Double-fold cheesecloth and place in a standard colander.
  7. Pour liquid from the pot, through the cheesecloth, into the large bowl. Do this slowly! (Two person job!!)
  8. Shake out the majority of the debris caught in the cheesecloth and return to the colander. Pour the liquid from the bowl, again through the cheesecloth, back into the pot.
  9. Repeat steps 7 & 8 indefinitely, until you feel like the liquid has completely cleared.
  10. Return the pot to the stove and bring to a light simmer.
  11. Simmer, tasting intermittently, until the flavor has concentrated to your liking.

Note – many people add fragrant, flavorful herbs and vegetables (onions, celery, etc) to the pot for the initial simmering. This will still create a lovely stock, but we really enjoy the flavor of the pure, bones only, stock.