Broth & Stock: A Review

I just wanna say I absolutely love soup. Growing up, “Bas-Oy” Soup (pork cutlets with Bok Choy) made it as one of my family’s lunch staples along with rice and for dinner, we had “Tinola” (Fish Soup with Cabbage) and let me not forget Mung Beans Soup with pork bits which tastes “almost” similar to Lentil soup. Not only were they cheap and easy to make, it truly was something we all enjoyed and very satisfying. My family moved to the US and gone were the days of thin soups as they were replaced with the heavier Beef Stew, Lentil, Cream of Broccoli and Green Pea and Ham so you can say our staples definitely assimilated to American cuisine.

Speaking of soups, I just recently acquired a new cookbook to add to my collection, Broth & Stock from the Nourished Kitchen by Jennifer McGrunther. I received this in a timely manner since I’m planning to change my yearly liquid fast/detox and put myself on a soup-based diet this year instead (just for a week) to shed a few extra pounds. The previous year, I was on a liquid diet for seven days subsisting only on coffee, tea, and vinegar water for some kind of a detox (I know I probably shouldn’t have had coffee but I had to have something) so going with the soups this year would definitely lessen the seeming deprivation factor. This book happens to have a lot of wonderful ideas for me to try. It has recipes for broth-based soups from seafood, meat and vegetables and then you have chowder and stews for those who prefer to have something more substantial. Some of them take hours to simmer (ranging 4-18 hours!) to achieve that perfect tender meat in the soup which I really don’t mind because there’s nothing more enjoyable than slow-cooked meat tendered to perfection, but I’m more drawn to the quick fixes ranging 30 minutes to a little bit over an hour.

Going through the pages, I find that it also has a few recipes to go along with the soup like Dashi-Braised Chicken Thighs, Slow-Roasted Salt and Pepper Chicken and Mashed Potatoes and Gravy with Black pepper & Fresh Thyme and Risotto. How awesome is that! Unlike the previous cookbook I got, I find the ingredients easily obtainable at your local grocery store as opposed to going to a specialty store. This is definitely a plus for me. I understand each cook has their secret signature ingredient which makes the recipe their own but I can honestly say, I’m not quite there yet so naturally I’m more appreciative of the ordinary.

Although the title only mentions broth and stock, it actually covers a little bit more than that. It also has techniques and other helpful information along with a few extra non-soup recipes and I’m happy to say it’s not Vegan! No offense to Vegans out there. There is a section dedicated only to vegetable soups sans meat-based broth in the ingredients so there’s definitely a little something for everybody, which makes this my kind of cookbook. I would recommend this to a friend just to have (I’m a soup person, what do you expect?), to the culinary enthusiasts who want to elevate their cooking to the next level using broth & stock, and lastly for those who are contemplating to go on a soup-based diet adventure.

[This is my unadulterated review for a complimentary copy of the aforementioned book which I received from Blogging for Books ]

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