Thursday, August 6, 2009

vegetable stock concentrate

this is a new thing for me, and a new favourite. i've always made my own stock because i've always felt a bit odd opening a tetra pak stock, or using a cube. making my own stock has also taken precious time and effort....this stock concentrate has revolutionalised my thinking about stock. let me get on with the recipe and you can make your own judgement. the vegetables only need to be chopped roughly as they will be pureed once cooked.

1/2 cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 parsnip, peeled and chopped
1 turnip, peeled and chopped
2-3 stalks of celery (i used several of the inside stalks, including the leaves), chopped
a good handful of parsley, chopped
150 grams salt (yes, you read that correctly. it preserves the mix and provides an accent to the mix)

heat the oil in a saucepan large enough to contain the vegetables (which should weigh about a kilogram altogether).
sweat the onion and garlic until soft and slightly coloured.
add the parsnip, turnip, celery, parsley and salt and continue to gently cook the vegetables. the salt will draw out moisture, so the vegetables can soften in their own liquid.
give everything a good stir, lower the heat and place the lid on the pot and allow everything to cook slowly. check every now and then to ensure the vegetables don't catch; once everything is very tender, use the bamix to puree it all.
have some sterilised jars ready and decant the puree into them. place the lids on immediately and invert. once cooled, the jars should be vacuum sealed. store the jars in the refrigerator and use within six months.

that's it. a tablespoon is equivalent to a stock cube. use the mix as you would salt - sparingly and carefully. mixing a spoonful in water will give you instant vegetable stock. in some cases, i've found that i will use it to season food instead of salt and it's just that bit more interesting than seasoning with plain salt. remember not to overdo things because there's alot of salt in the mix, and if you go overboard, whatever you're cooking is going to be mighty salty.
for those of you with a thermomix, you'll recognise it as a thermomix recipe, but i don't see why it should be made exclusively by those with a thermomix; everyone else should try it too.

No comments: