The making of bone broth is an ancient practice, one that was developed out of necessity and frugality. It’s economical, making the most of the animal and is also equally delicious! After consumed homemade broth, you’ll never go back to bullion cubes! The flavor is beyond compare.
All you need is a carcass, stove top, a large pot and water. Shucks, you can even use a crock pot! If you want to move toward traditional living, there’s no skill easier learned!
WHAT IS BONE BROTH MADE FROM?
Meat broth can be made from tough old animals, leftover scraps or bones. In days past, even mammal heads were skinned and boiled in effort make use of every last bit! A traditional recipe was…drum roll please…headcheese!
If interested (hey, its on my bucked list!) I believe Shaye of the Elliot Homestead has a wonderful recipe for such.
Both chicken and turkey feet are a hot commodity ’round here. Their broth tends to be flavorless, gelatinous and is best mixed in with bone broth for a richly-flavored stock!
SPECIFICS ON CRITTERS
Poultry make a delicious broth. Chickens, turkeys, waterfowl (ducks, geese) and even wild birds can be put to use in this manner. Be aware that waterfowl have a stronger, unique flavor which some find less agreeable.
Beef, meat goats/sheep and hogs will make an equally palatable broth, along with wild game you hunted in the back 40!
When we butcher old hens (ducks, chickens or turkeys), we often remove meat from the bone and pressure can the flesh. The carcasses are placed in a freezer bag and tossed into the freezer for making broth…at a later date. Pressure canning meat takes time, folks! And nothing shall distract me while doing so!
When butchering creatures of red meat, we cut up the backbone, neck and anything we can easily salvage. Wrapping in freezer paper, we also pop them into the freezer for making broth at a later date.
A word of caution on wild game and particularly deer? Be assured about the health of your animal before using bones in broth. Deer in the state of Wisconsin experienced an outbreak of Chronic Wasting Disease in 2002, a disease that can affect humans. Neither flesh nor bones from these animals should be consumed. Research your local area before processing deer bones!
HOW TO MAKE BROTH
While the broth-making process is a long one, its also very simple: cover goods with water and turn on burner. I love using our outdoor gas stove for this purpose. Let it simmer for anywhere from 8 hrs-3 days. Only thing you have to do? Check it every couple hours to ensure liquid doesn’t run out. Oh, and you may wish to pop in salt and your favorite seasonings or herbs.
Some people even add veggies for a richer flavor!
Once it has simmer to your liking, strain out bones, meat, herbs and (if used) veggies. Filter it through a cloth to catch floaties.
HOW TO PRESERVE IT
Broth can be refrigerated for up to 10 days, frozen for months or pressure canned. Actually, pressure canning broth is incredibly simple! Because fat shouldn’t be canned, skin the oily fats from the surface of broth. While still hot, ladle liquid into quart canning jars and process in a pressure-canner according to instructions that came with your manual.
I used the All-American weighted gauge canner. We live just over 2,000 ft in elevation and according to my pressure-canner’s instructions, I must process my quarts at 15 lbs pressure for 25 minutes.
This broth is great for making quick gravies, stews or soups. I love having it on hand. Not only is it highly nutritious but it tastes amazing!