Each time I prepare vegetables, or use fresh herbs during the preparation of a meal the bits, ends, and leaves are saved into a container and placed into the refrigerator. When I have accumulated a large container full it is time to make veggie stock.
I never add salt to ant stock as one of the most useful ways to use this stock is to rehydrate dried beans which are more nutritious than frozen or canned beans. If there is salt in the stock while soaking the beans will absorb the salt into the skins and they will toughen and this will slow down the cooking of the beans to tender. Likewise never add salt to water or any stock to cook beans in. Once the beans are cooked to tender then it is time to flavor with salt, etc. I also recommend cooking dried beans in the stock they soak in. Be sure to rinse the beans prior to soaking to be sure they are free of grit or debris.
Equipment/ utensils required:
Mixing bowl, stock pot, large sieve, seal-able refrigerator storage containers .
1 container or more of veggie and herb parts.
About 1 gallon or slightly more water to cover all
1. Wash all vegetables and herbs, prior to removing ends, stems etc. so that the leaves, stems, ends, etc. are clean of dirt or other contaminants. Keep the organic scraps in a sealed container in the refrigerator until time to make stock. Do not keep the scraps more than four or five days or they will begin to deteriorate.
2. Put all the parts into a large stock pot with enough water to cover to about 2 to 3 inches above the veggies. About a gallon. (The veggie parts will want to float, so push them down with spatula to make sure of water volume)
3. Bring to a rolling boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and let simmer for 2 to four hrs. on the lowest heat
4. When cooked and cooled to room temperature pour all into a large sieve that has been placed over a large mixing bowl and strain out the vegetable and herb matter.
5. Pour into storage containers and hold under refrigeration.
Makes about 1 gallon of stock