3

votes

Hack my bone broth...

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created August 13, 2012 at 12:05 PM

I tried to whip up my own batch of beef bone broth this weekend and did not get the desired results. I had four pounds of marrow bones (bought from the butcher fresh that day), I roasted them in a 400 deg oven for 30 min (as recommended by some recipes to get a better flavor), then simmered it for over 12 hours with enough water to cover the contents, a few veggies from my 'scrap bag' i.e. carrots, onions, celery, and 2 tablespoons of cider vinegar. I then removed the bones (At the end of the 12 hours), strained the broth, and popped in the fridge. The next morning, I had every intention of having a nice cup of steaming broth with my breakfast, but the broth did not gel up as I had expected and tasted horrible!!! I am not a picky eater but I dumped it right down the sink. Does anyone have any ideas what might have gone wrong? I have been very successful making chicken broth with a whole carcass and am a very experienced cook, I just don't know what happened.

Ff1dbd6cecad1e69a8234fb2c2c5c5ed

(1409)

on August 14, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I use burnt onions: half (don't peel) an onion and put it on some aluminium foil directly on the burner, cut side down. Wait until the cut side is completely blackened. Open windows, put onion into stock pot. Also let the stock only simmer, no hard boiling. Take the meat out when it's done, cut into pieces and use for beef salad.

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 13, 2012
at 08:28 PM

I sprinkled the bones with sea salt when I roasted them and added it to the broth.

45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on August 13, 2012
at 08:19 PM

Oxtails are the best.

Cebbca9a78d5612bf3468b273c2010d5

(452)

on August 13, 2012
at 07:17 PM

Nothing soothes the soul like a mug of hot bone broth. I almost use it less often in cooking because I wind up drinking it so quickly.

94480caec9fbbaacc386d86a45efa720

(1007)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:50 PM

I agree that beef broth can be harsh. I would at least cook and puree some squash (zucchini, summer, butternut) in it after it is made.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:23 PM

A hot mug of bone broth is divine and a perfect meal on its own!

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d

(3043)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:17 PM

Also, gelatin is only one of the hundreds of substances that good bone broth contains. If you are going for gut healing, then you need the gelatin, otherwise you still have lots of nutrition even if it doesnt gel.

F9638b939a6f85d67f60065677193cad

(4266)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:03 PM

Yeah, I was going to say that. Not just marrow bones, but joints. An alternative is to add skin (pork).

76211ec5301087de2588cfe3d6bccba9

(1178)

on August 13, 2012
at 01:33 PM

my broth took over a day to gel in the fridge...i thought i had failed at first...make sure you give it enough time before you dump it!

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11 Answers

5
Ff5d6fd79983af7b92bfab38b71823fb

(290)

on August 13, 2012
at 01:22 PM

You need bones with knuckles and cartilage to get the gel.

F9638b939a6f85d67f60065677193cad

(4266)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:03 PM

Yeah, I was going to say that. Not just marrow bones, but joints. An alternative is to add skin (pork).

4
94480caec9fbbaacc386d86a45efa720

(1007)

on August 13, 2012
at 04:11 PM

The best beef stock, imho, will be made with a mix of bones, meat and cartilage. The best flavor I've gotten has been from a big joint like the top of the femur plus a few cuts of shank with some good trimmings on them; you can also add some short ribs if you're short on meat. Brown bones at about 350??F. 400??F sounds a bit high to me, they caramelize a little more nicely a bit lower. Scrape the roasting pan too and add all the bits into the broth pot.

I never, ever add raw onions to a broth pot or slow-cooker recipe. You could quarter the onions and put them in with the roasting bones or sometimes I just toss them in one of my cast irons for a few minutes on medium-low and cook them until they're at least a bit translucent. Raw onion will make for bitter bitter results. Add a sprig of thyme for about every 2 to 3 lbs of bones and meat.

I have had good stock after 12 hours but I think the recommends for 24 hours are good. I usually use my slow-cooker so I can leave it sitting without worrying about it boiling dry. Skim any foamy, "scummy" looking stuff that comes to the top that you can; you don't need to be OCD but get some of that stuff out. I also let it cool in my slowcooker. I just let it set for hours, I want it room temp before I put it in my fridge.

On top of all this, I don't usually have broth plain. I almost always use it as a base for something else - either gravy or a pureed veggie soup. I don't particularly like it by itself. hth

Ff1dbd6cecad1e69a8234fb2c2c5c5ed

(1409)

on August 14, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I use burnt onions: half (don't peel) an onion and put it on some aluminium foil directly on the burner, cut side down. Wait until the cut side is completely blackened. Open windows, put onion into stock pot. Also let the stock only simmer, no hard boiling. Take the meat out when it's done, cut into pieces and use for beef salad.

4
45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on August 13, 2012
at 12:28 PM

It may have needed more time, since you mention lack of gelatin in your finished broth. 12 hours does not seem long enough to me. I usually simmer at least 24 hours, often much longer, in a crock pot. Some people don't like to add vegetables early in the process because the long cooking time can make them bitter. You didn't mention salt which makes a big difference in flavor. Just some thoughts, hope they're helpful.

46c9fbd45b82453f6a2dfe614a853314

(1876)

on August 13, 2012
at 08:28 PM

I sprinkled the bones with sea salt when I roasted them and added it to the broth.

1
5bc9ad5738ad8417d1e735b6ead201ca

(160)

on August 14, 2012
at 09:32 AM

I get much better broth in my pressure cooker than from a stock pot or crockpot.

I throw as many bones as will fit. I like oxtails if I have them, or bones from ribs, plus marrow bones, left over chicken carcass etc. Super duper bonus gel points if you can find chicken feet - you can even order them from grassland beef if you're so inclined.

Add a splash of apple cider vinegar. I like to put in a couple of bay leaves in my broth and a little salt. more extra bonus points if, instead of salt, you add a splash of fish sauce. Red boat is yummy and paleo friendly.

Cover bones, carcass, feet, etc. with water to the fill line.

Cook on high pressure for an hour to an hour and a half.

Remove from heat. I use natural release, but haven't tested it against other methods.

Strain broth through sieve to remove bay leaves, etc.

pick out random pieces of meat which were left on bones.

eat them.

curse that you burnt your tongue.

Eat another piece, cause the last one was yummy.

curse again.

Refrigerate over night.

The next morning, remove the satisfyingly icky layer of fat which has formed.

Enjoy your delicious bone broth goodness.

1
7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 13, 2012
at 07:36 PM

I usually add in some gelatin like pork feet they work great, you can try ox tail or some meaty soup bones as well. There is some good info at the healthy home economist.

http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/5-reasons-why-your-stock-wont-gel/

45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on August 13, 2012
at 08:19 PM

Oxtails are the best.

1
0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

on August 13, 2012
at 04:23 PM

It's also possible that you let the water temperature get too hot and you "burned" your gelatin. When making bone broth, it's a good idea to get a mix of bones from the neck, feet, joints and other parts.

1
4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d

(3043)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:16 PM

Beef broth usually needs 24 hours, so try cooking it longer.

Also, beef broth has a totally different taste than chicken broth, and can be a bit harsh. Beef broth tastes a little bit better if there is some meat left on the bones. I use my beef broth mostly for cooking and soups, fish broth for strongly flavored soups, and only drink chicken broth straight.

94480caec9fbbaacc386d86a45efa720

(1007)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:50 PM

I agree that beef broth can be harsh. I would at least cook and puree some squash (zucchini, summer, butternut) in it after it is made.

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d

(3043)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:17 PM

Also, gelatin is only one of the hundreds of substances that good bone broth contains. If you are going for gut healing, then you need the gelatin, otherwise you still have lots of nutrition even if it doesnt gel.

1
Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on August 13, 2012
at 12:36 PM

I make stock - 1 leg bone from a cooked lamb roast + some chicken bones (like a carcass, or 6 boned chicken somethings). Both with a little meat on. Slow rolling gentle boil for maybe 3-4 hours or so (prolly did mine for about 4). Came out plenty gelatiny for me, doing this. Like a jelly almost, but kinda like wobbly gelatiny puree sorta.

Then I just use that stock for making stews and soups (or just flavouring other dishes). Worked beautifully for the stew I made last week. Still have a cup of stock I want to use for soup, and going to make some more stock this week for more stew :)

I am not sure what the difference is between a broth and a stock, but I just followed an online recipe for cheap stock using bones that still have some meat on (which may even be half stock, half broth) and it turned out great.

Not sure why anyone would want to just use broth or stock as a drink tho, when whatever the heck its called is great in an actual meal. Is it nice as a drink normally BTW??

I cant say what went wrong with yours, when I tried initially to make one of these bone broths I used uncooked beef bones, simmered for like 8 hours and i didnt even drink/eat it. It came out totally gross, foul smelling, and not even gelatiny. I think using cooked bones with a little meat on them is the trick myself, going on my very limited experience. (I didnt use vinegar in mine, and didnt boil for that long either, and it worked out very gelatiny and great tasting)

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on August 13, 2012
at 02:23 PM

A hot mug of bone broth is divine and a perfect meal on its own!

Cebbca9a78d5612bf3468b273c2010d5

(452)

on August 13, 2012
at 07:17 PM

Nothing soothes the soul like a mug of hot bone broth. I almost use it less often in cooking because I wind up drinking it so quickly.

0
Bfa4d746ed4ff6f18e902089c2d6ff95

on March 18, 2014
at 04:59 PM

I always do a 24 hour simmer in my slow cooker. Some "experts" recommend cooling and skimming off and discarding fat "because after heating for that length of time the fats oxidize." So as @Mambo suggested - remove marrow after a two hour or so simmer. And I agree with @jjtitus that large bones need the 24 hour simmer. I suspect that if you remove the fat than you can use bones from animals that are not grass-fed. Anyone know what toxins might be hidden in a conventionally raised animals bones that would come out in the broth process?

0
44739854bd06eb5c32af5d33aa866864

(859)

on August 13, 2012
at 04:14 PM

12 hours is definitely not long enough for large bones like that, at least in my experience... I tried 12 hours once and ended up with cloudy water. Try simmering for 24 hours at least, and towards the end I always stir things around and pull the marrow out of the bones so that it can mix into the broth!

0
5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 13, 2012
at 04:05 PM

If you're just using marrow bones, you don't need to cook it very long. I just throw away the marrow bones after pushing out the marrows after about 2 hours. It's not the same as boiling ribs or other smaller bones which do dissolve. The marrow bones are pretty clear after the marrows come out. You can use a knife and detach some tendons and ligaments, however, and throw them in the broth. But it's my opinion that the marrow bones are useless once the core is pushed out. Anyone who disagrees please distinguish between marrow and other bones.

You can boil the broth for a few hours. I always use about 2 lbs. of marrow bones and boil for 2-4 hours. That has always been sufficient to produce the gel-llike product.

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