Hello, paleohackers. I'm glad to be part in the comunnity, and this is my first question.
I began recently digging up some superfood cooking: kefir, fermented vegetables, and now bone broth. My first attempt i used some pastured pork bones, with some fat on them wich resulted in an absolutely stock for cooking and or drinking with some parsley and olive oil after a meal.
My question is: i have my first beef(knuckel and marrow bone) bone broth cooking for 3 hours, and the black residous are coming t the surface and sticking to the sides on the pot.
Do you strain them, or they actually are beneficial since are a misture of loosely marrow that separetd from the bones, gelain, a little meat and fat?
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The gourmet food guides all say to finely strain the stock using increasingly smaller methods until you're pouring it through cheesecloth, but I have never understood why this would be beneficial unless you just want it to look pretty (i.e. clear).
I make stock regularly from bones, meat trimmings, and bags full of veggie scraps I've saved in my freezer. I never strain all the little bits out or skim the fat off the top. I think this stock is far more flavorful and satisfying than the premium stocks I used to buy. I use the stock as a base for many dishes and each batch is a little different depending on what types of meat and veggies I've had saved up but they all turn out great.
Most stock recipes say to cook everything for a couple hours, but there is amazing amount of flavor and nutrition still left in the ingredients, which is wasted if everything is tossed after just a few hours. Each of my "stock sessions" lasts about two days. I use a crockpot which has steady, gentle heat and doesn't need to be checked as often. About every 4-6 hours I pour some liquid off, package it for freezing, and then adding more water and sometimes more veggies and I continue gently cooking everything until the bones are soft and the marrow is dissolved. So in this way I'm making a rich bone broth, too, not just a simple stock. I generally get about 10 quarts from each "session" and I do this about once or twice a month or whenever I have enough scraps saved up.
Speaking of scraps ~ I save everything that I don't use in salads or recipes ~ onion skins, celery bottoms, mushroom stems, carrot tops, apple cores (seeds removed), cucumber peel, winter squash skins, etc. I've found there are only a few things that don't do well in a long-cooking stock, such as bell peppers and certain fruit bits, which get fed to the compost instead.
dont sweat it.
no need to skim or strain unless you want a nice clear stock for a fancy sauce. Otherwise enjoy all the little chunks and globs that come off and out of your bones.
I usually strain everything out of my broth. While the floating tidbits may have some nutritional value, most of that nutrition will get sucked out into the liquid that it's cooking in.
Depends on what benefit you are hoping to gain from drinking your bone broth.
Just a flavorful base for recipes? Then straining is fine.
Looking to treat leaky gut issues and arthritic/connective tissue problems? Don't strain, drink/eat it all.
My my N=1 experience of using bone broth to ease arthritic pain in all joints is that I didn't feel as much of a benefit with strained broth as when I did not strain, simply drank everything I could, even parts of the bone/cartilage that were soft enough to chew.
I also use a pressure cooker, which can make the process go from 3 days of simmering to 6 hours start to finish. After 6 hours in the pressure cooker, even the big knuckle bones have edges that start to crumble and disentegrate, I eat all that too.
It has also been my experience that for arthritic pain, the best bones are ones with the most gristle or cartilage on them, (as opposed to marrow bones.) You can through in chicken or pigs feet with your bones for extra collagen. If you need a bone broth recipe, here's mine.