Vegetable Broth, on-the-fly

In restaurants, I often found myself far from the image of a gourmet chef in a grandiose kitchen, skillfully skimming sauces and artfully crushing peppercorns with the heel of my knife, pausing only to wave my cupped hand over a pot to smell the progress of my creation. Instead, imagine too many cooks in the kitchen, yelling "behind!" because there was ALWAYS someone in the way.  Imagine every burner on the stove with something on it, every oven with something in it and then imagine carrying pots bigger than you knew existed, halfway or more full, down a set of stairs to cool.  There always seemed to be stairs involved.

Sweat is rolling down your brow, your spine and the back of your knees and the only thing you are focusing on are the 15 things you are doing at the same time.

Anyone who would like to improve their multi-tasking skills should work in a busy restaurant for a month.

Vegetable Stock, On-The-Fly

I should just say that you can take the chef out of the restaurant but you can't take the restaurant out of the chef!

As a personal chef, my clients seem to be most impressed when they walk into their kitchens to see a pot on every burner (hopefully they're more impressed by the food!), and often times, one of those pots is this recipe.

Vegetable Stock, on-the-fly

Vegetable broth is my liquid gold.  I often make it on-the-fly, since I'm also doing 10 other things at the same time, and freeze leftovers in 2 cup portions.

This recipe is more of a template for a great tasting quick-broth and can be mixed with other vegetable scraps, herbs and spices.


Vegetable Broth, on-the-fly

INGREDIENTS:  (makes approximately 2 quarts)

  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 large onions, roughly chopped into 1” pieces
  • 1 stock celery, roughly chopped into 1” pieces
  • 7 medium carrots, peeled and roughly chopped into 1” pieces
  • 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • kosher salt & peppercorns
  • 3 quarts water
  • lemon juice to taste

-In a large pot over medium-high heat, add the olive oil.
-When hot, add the onions, celery, carrots, garlic and a large pinch of salt.
-Sweat out vegetables until onions are translucent, stirring often to avoid burning.
-Add the water, peppercorns and another large pinch of salt.  Bring to a boil.
-Once at a boil, lower to a simmer and simmer for 45 minutes.
-Strain and adjust seasoning with salt and lemon juice.

My tips:

-Chop into small pieces.
-Sweat out the vegetables.
-Start with cold water, bring to a boil and then to a simmer.
-Always add a bit of lemon juice!
-Freeze any extras in small quantities for later use.