Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Maybe Not Shakespeare's Hell-Broth...But Better!

                                                                                    William Shakespeare

I’ve always been good about making and saving chicken and beef broth, but this past week I made veggie broth! Well, technically it was corn broth, but it will be a fabulous base for crab soup or corn chowder or any recipe that calls for vegetable broth. If you’ve been too intimidated to make meat broth, this broth won’t scare you a bit.

This time of year you can buy fresh, local corn cheap and nothing tastes yummier in the whole wide world (except dark chocolate and a glass of good red wine…). I harvested our heirloom corn this week which was organically grown, but disappointingly tough and not so sweet. I shucked it and fed the leaves to the horses who thought it might be Christmas come early. Then I blanched the corn in boiling water for two minutes, before plunging it in to a sink full of ice cold water to stop the cooking process. I saved the boiling water to make the broth.

Next, I cut all the kernels off with the handy-dandy new toy I got from pampered chef (much easier than the
knife I’ve used for years).

I loaded up clean, empty yogurt containers with 3 cups of corn each which is enough to feed my family for one meal.

Gathering up the corn husks, I chopped them and put as many as I could into the corn water and set it to simmer for twenty minutes. That was an arbitrary number. I suppose you could simmer it longer if you wanted.

Next I fished out the husks (more treats for the horses!) and strained the water to catch any stray corn hairs and all the little kernels that came loose. After it was cool, I loaded the milky broth into more clean yogurt containers and froze it. This winter when I make corn chowder or broccoli soup, the broth will create a wonderful base.

Now my freezer is stocked with corn and corn broth. Easy-peasy. If you have a pressure canner, you could easily can this broth instead, but I’m still frightened of my pressure canner. Someday…

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