Bone broth is beneficial primarily because it contains Gelatin, a protein made of dissolved collagen. Collagen is found throughout the body and is a major component of your bones, skin, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. As your body ages it affects the quality and quantity of collagen that your body produces, which is where bone broth can help support your body by providing another source of collagen.
What’s in it?
- Gelatin is a protein made from dissolved collagen. Collagen is found in connective tissue and supports skin and joint health. While the amount of protein will vary depending on the volume of water used, types of bones and length of cooking, most bone broth contains about 10 grams of protein per 250ml serving.
- Glycine is an amino acid and an important neurotransmitter that has anti-inflammatory properties and supports the immune system.
- Proline, along with other key nutrients like vitamin C, helps to support healthy joint health and collagen production
- B vitamins like niacin and riboflavin, both of which play a role in metabolism as they assist the body to break down carbohydrates, proteins and fats to produce energy.
- Glucosamine and chondroitin, nutrients that help support joint health.
- Trace minerals, but, despite popular claims, it is not a good source of calcium, phosphorus or other minerals
Bones – They can be pork, beef, chicken or lamb bones. Although I personally find beef and chicken bones the easiest to deal with. I would avoid bones with lots of marrow as they can add a lot of unwanted grease to the broth which doesn’t do anything for the flavour.
Water – I sometimes use vegetable stock to add another layer of flavour.
I always find that making a bone broth is best after you have made a roast and have no idea what to do with the bones. That way you have already taken care of the first step in making a bone broth and bonus, you have also reduced waste by making something not only useful, but nutritious.
- Add bones to a large saucepan and add enough water just to cover the bones.
- Add any herbs or spices you would like to add to the broth for flavour. Some great choices are black pepper, bay leaves, ayurvedic herbs such as astragalus or reishi mushrooms are also beneficial for hormonal balance and immunity.
- You might want to consider adding apple cider vinegar and some roasted garlic and onions to balance the richness of the broth and add another layer of flavour and acidity. You will also benefit from the additional pre-biotics that help support a healthy gut biome.
- Bring to a simmer. Simmering allows the broth to be at a low temperature which creates a better flavour and clarity and allows the broth to form into a gel as it won’t break down the gelatin from the bones (which is what we want.
- Simmer broth over 10hrs, skimming any scum that rises to the top (which is usually just protein) to ensure that you have released the good stuff and the broth remains clear. Over simmering your bones can actually release histamines which are the cause of allergies, so be careful not to overdo it!
- Add any root vegetables such as carrots, celery 30mins before you finish your broth to add additional flavour and fibre to your broth.
- Strain the broth adding to glass containers to freeze or store in the fridge.
- Degrease the broth by spooning off any fat that floats on the surface. You can also wait until it cools to make it easier as the fat will rise to the surface.
- Garnish with leafy herbs such as parsley, basil or thyme for depth of flavour and the benefits of additional phytonutrients and antioxidants.