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Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Stock - The start of a beautiful thing!!!

Stock is a truly wonderful thing. If made correctly (this is key) it's a gorgeous base liquid, full of flavour, beautiful aroma and it really is the 'soul' of any recipe. Stock is not difficult to make, it is simply a case of following a few necessary rules and you cannot go wrong.

There are a thousand recipes for stock and I would certainly encourage anyone to try several with the goal of finding a good flavour match to their favourite dishes but remember, keep it simple and follow the rules or the stock will become poor quality and will ruin your cooking instead of making it! And try not to experiment with the mirepoix or 'aromatics' of the stock other than veal stock where you remove the celery.

There are two main types of stock:                                  
                                                                                                                 Chicken stock ready to cook
Brown stock:
Beef stock
Veal stock

White stock:
Chicken stock
Fish stock
Vegetable stock

Click the links above for each stock in simple detail. Practice and you will soon learn how each one comes together. I do not intend this to be a 'master class' in the art of stock making but each recipe is tried and tested over many years and will give you some considerable weapons in your basic cooking armoury. There is nothing like the feeling that the dish or sauce you are about to make is based on a good quality home made stock which in turn, is full of the passion you cannot help but put into it!

Tip: Once made, the stock can be used immediately, refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months. I tend to freeze my stock in Tupperware type cartons of about 150ml each which is ideal as a base for gravy, soups and sauces. Alternatively, freeze in ice cube trays so you can turn out just enough stock 'cubes' for smaller meals. When using from the freezer, take care to defrost thoroughly before using.

I recommend that you use free range and organic produce for every recipe, diet, juice and detox found within this site. There is no substitute for good quality food!

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