How to Turn Tired Vegetables into Liquid Gold

Sauteing vegetables to make vegetable stock

Do you ever find yourself with tired, wilted veggies, that you don’t know what to do with? Don’t throw them out! Instead, use them to make beautiful, liquid gold: homemade vegetable stock.

Vegetable stock is the easiest of all the stocks to make. It only simmers for an hour, unlike the three or four hours meat or fish stocks require. It’s also a great base for soup!

Generally speaking, any vegetable except those from the cruciferous family can be used in a vegetable stock. Also, too many carrots can make the stock too sweet.

This afternoon, I made a batch of vegetable stock, knowing I would use it to make a pot of Minestrone Soup on Monday. I vary the stock recipe each time I make it, dependent on the vegetables I have available to me.

Here’s my Recipe for Vegetable Stock

Ingredients

1 tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 leeks, white and light green parts only, well washed and chopped

4 medium onions, chopped

5 large carrots, peeled and chopped

4 stalks celery, chopped.

1 small rutabaga (about 1 cup), peeled and chopped

2 – 4 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped finely

1 small bunch of parsley

1 teaspoon of whole dried thyme

2 dried bay leaves

8 cups of water

Directions

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large pot. I like to use a stock pot.

Add the vegetables and stir-fry for about 10-15 minutes to brown lightly.

Sauteing vegetables to make vegetable stock
Sautéing vegetables.

Add the thyme, bay leaves, and cold water. Bring the pot to a boil, reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for one hour.

Strain the stock through a fine sieve of a cheesecloth-lined colander. Press or squeeze the vegetables to extract their liquid. Discard the vegetables.

Use the stock as called for in your favourite recipes or chill and freezer for later use.

What to do with your Stock

I saved my stock for a vegetarian Minestrone Soup to make on Monday. I’ll share that recipe with you later this week.

Hope you see just how easy it is to make your own homemade vegetable stock. Now you can put those tired vegetable to good use, and waste less in your kitchen!

Happy cooking!