The older I get the more compulsive I get about not wasting food. Which is why my heart sang when I stumbled across the (rather obvious) idea that one could simply save all those random vegetable cuttings in a bag in the freezer and then use them to make vegetable stock. Hurrah!
So the hubby and I have been tucking our carrot peels, bell pepper caps, broccoli stems (we like them, but they are a pain to peel and the hubby will only eat them peeled), and other bits of what would otherwise be refuse in a gallon freezer bag. Chop veggies. Dump trimmings in bag. Return to freezer.
This weekend, I upended the bag into the crock up (turns out one freezer bag just fills my 6 quart crock pot), added 7 cups of water, and left it on low for 8 hours.
Using a metal strainer and some cheesecloth, I strained the liquid from the solid bits and found myself with a bowl full of raspberry red stock. (Beets are a wonderfully effective dye.)
For now, the stock is sitting in jars in the fridge. We plan to pressure can it tomorrow night. And then, the soup making shall commence! : )
You'll notice we didn't add any salt. I figured that we can easily do that to taste as we make the soups/dishes so there was no need to add it here. We're used to buying the "low sodium" stock anyway, so I don't expect to be dumping in buckets of the stuff.