Vedge Mushroom Stock
At Vedge in Philadelphia, chef-owner Rich Landau uses mushrooms in three forms to make this deeply flavored stock: fresh, dried and powdered. If you cant find mushroom powder, use an electric spice grinder to pulverize dried porcinis, oysters or another mushroom of your choice.
Make ahead: The broth can be refrigerated for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months. Adapted from the upcoming Vedge: 100 Plates Large and Small That Redefine Vegetable Cooking, by Landau and Kate Jacoby (The Experiment, 2013).
2 teaspoons canola oil
8 cups (about 1 1/2 pounds) mushrooms or mushroom trimmings, wiped clean
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup dried shiitake mushrooms
4 quarts water
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon porcini or other mushroom powder (see headnote)
2 sprigs rosemary
Heat the oil in a large stockpot over high heat until it starts to ripple. Add the mushroom trimmings, onion and dried shiitakes and cook, stirring, until brown, 3 to 5 minutes.
Add the water, salt and mushroom powder. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat enough to keep the broth barely bubbling; cook uncovered for 40 minutes.
Remove from the heat, stir in the rosemary and steep for 5 minutes. Strain and discard the solids, then cool the broth and use or store as needed. Makes 3 quarts.
Scrappy Vegetable Broth
One of the simplest ways to make vegetable broth is to get in the habit of saving trimmings of vegetables as you cook. Transfer them to quart-size zip-top freezer bags and stash them in the freezer, and when you have two bags stuffed full, you have enough for this stock. Use mild-flavored vegetables, such as the ends and peels of carrots, onions and potatoes; the woody bottoms you snap off asparagus; the stems left behind when you strip off leaves of chard or neutral herbs such as parsley. Dont use anything particularly dirty (such as the hairy roots of onions), and rinse the trimmings before you freeze them to avoid having to worry about grit later.
Make ahead: The broth can be refrigerated for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months. From Washington Post food editor Joe Yonan, author of the upcoming Eat Your Vegetables: Bold Recipes for the Single Cook (Ten Speed Press, August 2013).
2 quart-size zip-top bags mixed vegetable trimmings (see headnote)
3 quarts water
Combine the vegetable trimmings and water in a large stockpot over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat just low enough so the broth is barely bubbling; cook uncovered for 30 minutes, until the trimmings are tender and the broth has taken on a nice flavor and a golden color.
Strain and discard the solids, then cool the stock and use or store as needed. Makes about 2 1/2 quarts.
Homemade Vegetable Bouillon
This technique, which Jennifer Perillo learned from fellow blogger and cookbook author Heidi Swanson, uses salt to cure the puréed vegetables, turning them into something that lasts for up to 3 months in the refrigerator. This is for someone who plans on going through 2 quarts of veggie broth a week, so you might consider giving half the bouillon to a friend.
Note: The salt is measured by weight to make sure you have enough of it to properly cure the vegetables, inhibiting bacterial growth.
Make ahead: The bouillon needs to rest in the refrigerator for 1 week before using (so the flavors can meld). Adapted from Perillos Homemade With Love: Simple Scratch Cooking From In Jennies Kitchen (Running Press, 2013).
2 medium carrots, trimmed, scrubbed and cut into large pieces
1 rib celery, cut into 1/2 -inch pieces
1 leek, white part only, cleaned thoroughly, then sliced
1/2 small onion or 1 shallot lobe, quartered
5 sun-dried tomato halves
3/4 cup (about 3 ounces) cremini mushroom caps and stems, cleaned and quartered
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley stems and leaves, rinsed and patted dry
3 1/2 ounces kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
Combine the carrots, celery, leek, onion or shallot, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, garlic, parsley, salt and black peppercorns in a food processor (work in batches if necessary). Purée to form a well-combined wet paste. It will taste quite salty. Transfer to a glass container with a tight-fitting lid; store in the refrigerator. The vegetable bouillon is ready to use after 1 week, by which time the flavors will have melded.
To use, combine 1 teaspoon of bouillon with 1 cup of boiling water. If you prefer a clear consommé, pour the broth through a fine-mesh strainer before using and discard the solids. Makes 2 cups (enough for 24 quarts of stock).