8

votes

Most stock recipes suggest "skimming the fat;" do we still want to do that?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 04, 2011 at 2:04 PM

I'm reading recipes across the net for how to use some marrow bones I luckily found at my meat counter this weekend. However, most recipes for soup / stock suggest skimming the fat off the broth once its done.

I know it could be reserved for later use (but in my case it will have herbs and veg stuck in it because its from a crockpot stew) but is that absolutely necessary?

I figured the reason is to lower the overall fat content of the broth to be more "healthy" but don't we want to keep the yummy healthy fat?

Thoughts?

00cd3b6f51530a6832fcda1712edbec3

(2411)

on February 21, 2013
at 05:47 AM

That ugly foam contains valuable amino acids. If you're going to drink the stock/bone broth straight, you might as well boost the nutritional value at the expense of the aesthetics.

65660697ed243c7980725fd014eb00e0

(494)

on July 13, 2011
at 11:12 PM

Thank you for this! I now skim the fat on my bone broth soup and save it for random recipes. It adds a certain something I wouldn't have been able to replicate otherwise.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on April 05, 2011
at 09:28 PM

Thanks for distinguishing between the fat and the foam. That was helpful.

9aa2a816c61170cc0183a68be0386ba5

(1702)

on April 05, 2011
at 02:16 AM

Thanks for the suggestions guys!

531db50c958cf4d5605ee0c5ae8a57be

(8878)

on April 04, 2011
at 09:29 PM

Exactly. My beef stocks have a layer of fat on top. I save the fat separately.

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 04, 2011
at 07:05 PM

chicken fat is 30% saturated fat, 45% monounsaturated fat and 21% polyunsaturated fatty acid, wheres say, beef is 50% saturated, 42% monounsaturated and only 4% polyunsaturated fat, (from On Food And Cooking by Harold Mcgee p.800) so I usually do skim my chicken stock but I might not skim a beef stock or i might reserve the beef fat for other use.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:01 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and turkey as part of a "fat burning foods" (http://www.chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/April-2010/Lose-The-Holiday-Weight-With-Fat-Burning-Foods) know it all ;)

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:00 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and turkey as part of a "fat burning foods" (chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/…) know it all ;)

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:59 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and chick as part of a "fat burning foods" (http://www.chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/April-2010/Lose-The-Holiday-Weight-With-Fat-Burning-Foods) know it all ;)

Cf5c9ba3c06cf300ae23c52778dfd317

(545)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:28 PM

Are you a family of French culinary professionals? I'm sure they don't teach that at Le Cordon Bleu.

E7be2ce38158357f5dacae07b43d1b29

on April 04, 2011
at 03:08 PM

I have oily skin and hair to begin with. I can't stand the feeling of additional oils.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25472)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:03 PM

I love fat on my lips skin and mouth...

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 02:57 PM

Actually our family had a saying that goes something like this. "The more stars it (soup) has the better it is" with "stars" being the small roundish fat on the surface.

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12 Answers

best answer

6
B64b07d4b6cea9e5c3e1c272e6393a0d

(472)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:52 PM

Skimming stock is usually done to preserve the clarity of the soup (the same principle applies to never bringing stock to a boil and instead letting it barely simmer at a "lazy bubble"). Personally I prefer the more unctuous nature of unskimmed stock, but it's purely a matter of taste or Omega 6 concerns. If you're using marrow bones for stock, you'll still preserve the collagen in the stock even if you skim it, but you'll notice that the stock may have a tendency to gelatinize (just heat it up again and it'll be fine).

Another delicious use for marrow bones: Soak the bones in cold water for 20 minutes.
Pop out the marrow. Save the bones for future use in stock. Roast the marrow in the oven at 400F for 10-15 minutes (until golden). Drop the roasted marrow (and it's accompanying oils) on to your favorite steak or roasted meat. Eat.

8
Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:51 PM

a lot of funky looking crap rises to the surface when youre making stock. at about hour 12, there is often a thick layer of foam. skim that. its ugly. toss it. clear stock is divine. leave the fat, skim the foam.

when you pour the stock into mason jars or whatever youre using for storage, the fat will congeal at the surface when it cools. its a matter of personal preference as to whether you use it or not. personally, if im storing in the fridge, i leave the fat layer on as a "seal". if im freezing, i remove the fat to use for cooking and freeze it without the fat.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on April 05, 2011
at 09:28 PM

Thanks for distinguishing between the fat and the foam. That was helpful.

00cd3b6f51530a6832fcda1712edbec3

(2411)

on February 21, 2013
at 05:47 AM

That ugly foam contains valuable amino acids. If you're going to drink the stock/bone broth straight, you might as well boost the nutritional value at the expense of the aesthetics.

4
Cf5c9ba3c06cf300ae23c52778dfd317

on April 04, 2011
at 02:30 PM

I'm pretty sure the recommendations to skim the fat are of a strictly culinary nature. A stock is supposed to be light and not greasy, as it is used in so many other recipes that don't necessarily call for a big glob of fat being dropped in.

I'd say skim it and save it. In the case of chicken stock, you might want to skim and discard it if you are watching your omega 6 intake. But it is entirely up to you.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:00 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and turkey as part of a "fat burning foods" (chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/…) know it all ;)

Cf5c9ba3c06cf300ae23c52778dfd317

(545)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:28 PM

Are you a family of French culinary professionals? I'm sure they don't teach that at Le Cordon Bleu.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:59 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and chick as part of a "fat burning foods" (http://www.chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/April-2010/Lose-The-Holiday-Weight-With-Fat-Burning-Foods) know it all ;)

Medium avatar

(5136)

on April 04, 2011
at 07:05 PM

chicken fat is 30% saturated fat, 45% monounsaturated fat and 21% polyunsaturated fatty acid, wheres say, beef is 50% saturated, 42% monounsaturated and only 4% polyunsaturated fat, (from On Food And Cooking by Harold Mcgee p.800) so I usually do skim my chicken stock but I might not skim a beef stock or i might reserve the beef fat for other use.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:01 PM

Noup but I'm sure guys and girls who recommend skim milk, high fiber foods and turkey as part of a "fat burning foods" (http://www.chefs.edu/Student-Life/Culinary-Central/April-2010/Lose-The-Holiday-Weight-With-Fat-Burning-Foods) know it all ;)

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on April 04, 2011
at 02:57 PM

Actually our family had a saying that goes something like this. "The more stars it (soup) has the better it is" with "stars" being the small roundish fat on the surface.

4
Ef9f83cb4e1826261a44c173f733789e

on April 04, 2011
at 02:29 PM

It's not necessary, per se, but the fat will separate from the stock anyway as it cools. Personally, I let the stock cool in a narrow pitcher. The fat hardens at the top and is easy to remove. I keep the fat, of course, and use it for other applications.

I'll add fat later to a dish that uses the stock, but the stock itself I prefer non-fat. I also don't like to add salt to the stock for the same reason.

531db50c958cf4d5605ee0c5ae8a57be

(8878)

on April 04, 2011
at 09:29 PM

Exactly. My beef stocks have a layer of fat on top. I save the fat separately.

65660697ed243c7980725fd014eb00e0

(494)

on July 13, 2011
at 11:12 PM

Thank you for this! I now skim the fat on my bone broth soup and save it for random recipes. It adds a certain something I wouldn't have been able to replicate otherwise.

2
E7be2ce38158357f5dacae07b43d1b29

on April 04, 2011
at 02:50 PM

I don't like fat floating in my soup, because the way soup is eaten, the fat clings to my lips, which is not a sensation I call pleasant. In the past, I've shared it with my dogs, but since onions are really bad for dogs and I don't know how much (if any) of the toxins from onions go into the fat, I'm not sure if it's a good idea. It seems it would be easy enough to strain the fat through a strainer to get out any herb remnants to make it easier to use for cooking.

EDIT: I remembered that with less/no fat, stock will last longer as well, so for those who like to prepare in advance, that's an advantage beyond strictly culinary or personal preference.

E7be2ce38158357f5dacae07b43d1b29

on April 04, 2011
at 03:08 PM

I have oily skin and hair to begin with. I can't stand the feeling of additional oils.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25472)

on April 04, 2011
at 03:03 PM

I love fat on my lips skin and mouth...

1
44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on April 04, 2011
at 07:08 PM

I do skim the fat, and use the fat to cook carrots and onions for braises. I can always enhance the taste of sauce by mixing few tablesooms fresh butter or marrow. Already long cooked fat has lost some of the fruity qualities.

1
B3c62d89cd47b7d7209b6a99243d0ded

on April 04, 2011
at 03:39 PM

I do skim the fat off of stock, but I don't discard it.

I cook veggies in that fat.

0
B0fcce2862c56489a0b9dfb511e7125e

on April 16, 2013
at 12:44 PM

I have a gadget that I invented which removes the fat from the top of soup or stew. It works best when the stew or soup is very hot (just off the boil). I have taken a cup or more of fat off an oxtail stew in a few minutes.

0
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on March 16, 2013
at 09:05 PM

i've never skimmed the fat from any broth i make. i need it too much.

0
68a6656b8c6f1fc0554f94da58617a69

on March 16, 2013
at 07:51 PM

I am making a beef stock for the first time with bones from grass-fed cattle. I am all for saving every nutritious bit. I don't think I'll skim either foam or fat. I hope to save the marrow too.

0
7d46edca72c2f8347f65d7b734d1f1eb

on February 18, 2013
at 04:56 PM

I think Whole 9 suggests that it is ok to consume it if the stock is from grass fed animals and if it is not then to skim and toss it. I believe it is because of omega 6 concerns and that toxins are more apt to be stored in the fat. Makes sense to me. Obviously if you don't like it or watching calories then toss it as well.

I would suggest leaving the fat on top of the gelatinous stock after you have left it in the fridge to cool it until you need to remove it to consume or use the stock. It will act like a barrier/seal to help preserve the stock.

0
00cd3b6f51530a6832fcda1712edbec3

(2411)

on February 18, 2013
at 08:04 AM

Is the fat damaged by cooking it for such a long time, even at a low temperature? I heard a brief discussion on this in a "Balanced Bites" podcast that tried to explain why most recipes for bone broth recommend discarding the fat after opening the jars.

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