A veggie, herb and spice kind of day…

Making Veggie Broth and Eating Veggie Dinners.

When we have veggies I like to save some of the cuttings and ends that generally get thrown away.  Things like the outer cabbage leaves and center, carrot ends, leek greens, broccoli stems and cauliflower centers.  I put them in a container and keep in the freezer until I fill it up.

Once it’s full, it all goes into the crock pot along with some other additions. For a better visual, that is a 5 quart crock pot pictured.

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I will toss in some dried lovage, sage, salt and pepper.  A couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar gives it a big flavor boost.

I also add some onion and fresh garlic. Dried garlic in a pinch.

It gets to cook on low all day or if it’s late in the day I will let it simmer all night.

After that, I let it cool, strain it, pour into mason jars and refrigerate.  TA DA, we have a wonderful, flavorful broth for the next soup or stew without any of the added sodium and other unwanted additives that are often found in store bought broth. It’s better tasting too.

It’s a great way to make full use of our expensive veggies while feeding our family a nutrient rich meal.

Do you make homemade broth? If so, please share your method with us.

While on the subject of veggies, do you ever “just” have a veg meal? We do it quite often.   No?  To bland?  No taste?  I used to think so too.  It got a lot better as I learned more about using spices and herbs.

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Last night we had a ” green veggie” meal. It was a mix of cabbage, leeks, broccoli, asparagus, onions and fresh chopped garlic. Additionally we added salt, pepper, Mrs Dash, sage and parsley. Delicious.  That bowl pictured is very large. We both ate generous servings with enough left over to be used as a side dish tonight.

When I first started using more spices and herbs I thought it really was not doing all that much for our meals.  I soon learned I was not using enough of most of them.  Now I am a lot more generous with their additions.  I wish I could give you some exact measurements, but, I rarely measure anything.  I just toss them in.

There is more to like about spices and herbs than just added flavor.  They have a lot of nutritional value. Sage, as an example, has been used for thousands of years. Reports say it can improve your concentration, prevent dementia, reduce inflammation, boost our immune system make our skin more healthy and our bones stronger.

sage
Sage
parsley
Parsley

Parsley is a great source of A, C and K vitamins. It has a number of powers including fighting oxidative stress, poor immunity, bladder infections, skin issues, kidney stones, digestive issues, inflammation and bad breath.

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Oregano

Oregano is reportedly used with great success to reduce inflammation, fight viral, fungal and bacterial infections. Also to combat parasites, fight allergies and even shrink tumors.

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Oh, I mentioned Lovage earlier.  In case you haven’t heard of it,  it taste a lot like celery.  I like the taste even better than celery. We have grown it for many years.  It’s very easy to grow and does well even here in Montana.  It will come back every year but after two or three seasons it gets to tough and strong.  I will usually pull it up and plant new.

This is what the plant looks like. It does not travel but send up more shoots around the original plant. You can cut it back for drying and it will grow right back again.

We generally get a good 3 cuttings throughout the summer.

dried-lovage

I will cut it down to about 4 or 5 inches from the ground and tie bundles to hang and dry. This is what it looks like dry.  It stores well and keeps just like any dried herb. 

Well that got more involved than I thought it would. (smile)..


I hope you try using more herbs and spices. Thanks for stopping by

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3 thoughts on “A veggie, herb and spice kind of day…

  1. I hope to see some comments with some of your ideas about making broth and adding herbs and spices..

  2. I have made veggie broth before, although I admit I often make and use bone broth as my family are definite carnivores! LOL Still, the homemade stuff tastes so much better than anything store-bought, plus is so much better nutritionally. I’ll throw a chicken carcass or two (depending on how big they are), plus water to cover, and whatever spices I’m feeling that day, then let it cook in the crockpot on low for up to 48 hours. Strain and either can or just put in the fridge. YUM! I do basically the same with beef marrow bones as well and the broth is excellent.

  3. Love the wild sage that grows up here! And your lovage looks a lot like a green the Tlicho and Dene indigenous people add to their stew-type meals -I wonder if it’s the same? Although I love the idea of a herb/vegetable-only meal, all four of our boys and at least two of our three girls would mutiny. Carnivores all of them!!!

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