Traditionally it has always been important to get the most value from eating meat. And that has meant simmering bones to extract the nutritional value and then use that as stock for soups and meals. Bone broth infused with tonic and nutritious herbs is one of the most powerful ways to improve physical and mental health for a number of reasons. Bone broth contains collagen that helps heal the gut lining. The breakdown in the gut lining (leaky gut) allows for inflammatory compounds to pass through into the blood stream and cause systemic inflammation that has been implicated in both physical and mental illness symptoms. Bone broth helps protect and restore that gut lining to reduce systemic inflammation. The bone broth also contains amino acids such as glutamine, proline, glycine and arginine that are key proteins that strengthen the intestines, the immune and the nervous system. Bone broth also contains chondroitin sulfates and glucosamine that helps reduce inflammation in the system.
When you add in an assortment of medicinal herbs you are augmenting the nutritional and tonic value of your bone broth to an amazing level. Tonic herbs such as astragalus, codonopsis and shitake mushrooms strengthen immunity, build strength and stamina, while nutritional herbs such as nettles, seaweeds and burdock are filled with vitamins and minerals that are easily absorbed in the form of warm broth.
This is perhaps the best and healthiest substance you can make for yourself- a true elixir. For those who appear dull, depressed, deficient with multiple health problems, bone broth can be a key stepping stone to greater health. To make bone broth it is best to work with bones that are made from wild game or free range grass fed animals. I often like to work with the left over bones from a whole roast chicken and sometimes beef bones but it can be made with lamb, pork and fish as well. To really get the most flavor out of your bones you can roast them for a half hour at 450.
Big Stock pot that can hold a couple gallons of liquid.
Bones from a whole roast chicken (or 4-5 pounds of meaty bones)
6 quarts of water
3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
2 Cut up whole onions
6 cloves of garlic
Assortment of herbs:
1 tablespoon of codonopsis,
8 stalks of astragalus
1/2 cup of nettles
1/2 cup of burdock
1 tablespoon of assorted seaweeds
12 shitake mushrooms.
After roasting the bones for a half hour, add the bones to a big stock pot. Then add 6 quarts of water and pour in a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. The vinegar helps breakdown the bones. Add in the onion, garlic and the herbs listed above and bring the whole thing to a light boil and then simmer the broth for at least 4 hours and 12-24 hours is best. Make sure to top up the water so that it covers the ingredients well. After the broth has simmered for that time then strain out everything except the liquid and pour it into containers that can be refrigerated or frozen for later use.
I like to use the broth for the base of my soups, for making rice, for stews and congees. I see it as my essential vitamin and mineral source and a prime way to receive nutrition in a way that my gut can easily absorb.
Cost: So how much does it cost to make a batch of herbed bone broth? Well I’m not going to add in the cost of the bones, the garlic, onions and apple cider vinegar here but for the herbs lets take a look. Prices here based on buying a pound of each first.
1/2 cup of nettles 45 cents
1/2 cup of burdock 1 $
1 tablespoon seaweed 20 cents
1 tablespoon codonopsis 65 cents
12 shiitake mushrooms/dried. 3 $
Total cost 6.30$. That’s for 6 quarts of supremely nutritious broth.