Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Every Broth You Take

I'm pretty sure I'm not supposed to have a tan, wasps landing on me and a craving for ice cream in the middle of March.  Two days in a row of 79 degree temps. is hardly broth brewing weather but nonetheless after 72 hours of bubbling bones I have broth.  And lots of leftover meat for the dogs.

This is what it looked like after I strained it.

Here it is the next day after spending a night in the fridge.  The white stuff is a nice layer of tallow that I can use for cooking fat.

 I scooped it off the top and ended up with a nice haul.

I'm excited about this because yikes, grass fed tallow is spendy, $24 including shipping for 14 oz.  Not sure how much I have there because I didn't compact it but that alone probably comes close to almost sort of covering the cost of the bones.  Plus I have all the broth which probably more than makes up the cost, at least compared to what it costs in New York City ($4.75 for an 8 oz cup, $7 for 12 oz).  Maybe I could go into business here in Boulder.

I heated up a bowl for myself.

And the verdict is . . . hmmm, not quite sure yet.  It isn't awful, but I can't say that it's mmmmmm, amazingly delectable either.  Part of it is that I'm still not used to meat and the oxtail is a very strong smell and flavor.  Will take some getting used to but I'm optimistic that I can do it.  Also I can use it for stock in other things though it is a very overpowering flavor so I can't use it in just anything.

Of course I shared with the dogs.  They give it an enthusiastic thumbs up.  Plus this is a great way to keep Strummer occupied for at least a few minutes.

I did make one big mistake and that was not paying attention while I was straining the broth.  I didn't notice that the  bowl I was straining into was overflowing so I lost some precious broth down the sink and then lost some more when I poured the overflow into another bowl.  I know I lost some fat because here's a photo of the broth from the crock pot before I overfilled the bowl.

The layer of fat is almost twice the layer from the photo at the top of the post that was taken after I'd lost the overflow.  Next time I'll pay closer attention.

The other thing I'd do differently is use lime juice rather than apple cider vinegar but that's a personal thing, I hated the smell of the vinegar but I like lime juice.

Also I'd add the onions much later, maybe 12 hours before I was going to be done.  The onions turned black and carmelized the first day and made for a sticky slimy mess.  Plus I'm sure that's not healthy.

Otherwise I don't think I'd do anything all that much differently.  Would like to try some different types of bones, that oxtail is so strong.  But this will require some research into local farms because the grocery stores don't seem to carry anything else.

I froze a small portion of the broth but left a big bowl that I'll hopefully use this week.  Jonny won't eat it but the dogs will share it with me.  Now to find some recipes!

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