The making of bone broth is a simple, traditional skill that has made a comeback in the past 10 years. In fact, it has become a staple in many frugal and health conscious homes. Try it once and you’ll understand why! Pressure canning it allows you keep prepared broth on hand for feeding the family.
Let’s dive into this, shall we?
WHAT IS BONE BROTH MADE FROM?
In brief, it is made from bones of mammals, poultry and even fish.
By simmering bones in water for long periods of time, nutrients and minerals are leached out into the liquid, resulting in a highly nutritious broth.
Did you know that chicken and turkey feet make a wonderful broth as well, though they carry less flavor?
HOW TO STORE BONES
Both raw and cooked bones can be used for broth-making!
After roasting and removing meat from a chicken, bones can be placed in a zip loc bag. Store them in the freezer until you’ve accumulated enough to make a pot of broth. Do the same for red meats!
If you butcher your own animals, you’ll have the ability to utilize so much more! Save all the bones you can. Simmer immediately or freeze until ready to use. You may find butcher paper more convenient for wrapping products from larger animals.
If you hunt, you can use wild game bones in the same way. However, be cautious with deer! Should you live in an area that has experienced an outbreak of Chronic Wasting Disease, always get your animal tested! The disease can be transmitted to humans and one cannot be too careful!
HOW TO MAKE BROTH
While the broth-making process is a long one, its also very simple! Cover the bones with water and simmer for 8-48 hours on your stove top. I love using our outdoor gas stove for this purpose!
Add water to your pot every 3-4 hours to ensure the bones are always covered. You may wish to add salt and favorite herbs or seasonings. Some people even add veggies for a richer flavor!
Once you are happy with the strength of the broth, it should be strained through a cloth. Throw out bones and bits of meat. Because pressure canning recipes are for broth only, be sure your liquid doesn’t contain solids.
Also strain off the fats and oils, are they aren’t consider safe to can.
HOW TO PRESERVE IT
If you don’t have time to process your broth immediately, it can be refrigerated for up to 10 days. If refrigerating, allow broth to cool before doing so. Re-heat liquid before fill jars.
When you are ready to pressure can, ladle hot liquid into hot canning jars and process in a pressure-canner according to the instructions that came with your manual.
Personally, I use a weighted gauge pressure canner. At 2,000 ft in elevation I must (according to my pressure-canner’s instructions) process quarts at 15 lbs pressure for 25 minutes.
Remember your jars will be hot when you remove them from the canner. Avoid exposing them to cold surfaces. Always test seals and remove metal bands before storing away.
HOW TO USE BONE BROTH
The obvious way to use your broth is as a base in soups, stews and chili. We also use it in gravies and meat pies. Sometimes, I poach morning breakfast eggs in the broth. Get creative! It’s there for you, whenever you need it!