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The power of bone broth

The Hemsley sisters seem to have made the humble broth fashionable again. It now seems everyone is waxing lyrical about the outstanding health benefits of stock made from boiling bones but this is nothing new, the sisters have just brought it to our attention and we must be grateful.

Bone broth or stock was a way our ancestors made use of every part of an animal. Bones and marrow, skin and feet, tendons and ligaments that you can’t eat directly can be boiled and then simmered over a period of days. This simmering causes the bones and ligaments to release healing compounds like collagen, proline, glycine and glutamine that have the power to transform your health.

The power of bone broth can help with:

• Leaky gut syndrome

• Overcome food intolerances and allergies

• Improve joint health

• Reduce cellulite

• Boost immune system

It really is the perfect and most comforting antidote to drink for a cold or flu systems as the broth made from bone marrow, skin and cartilage is a particularly rich source of glycine and proline that help to support the production of white blood cells – basically helps to build up a weak immune system so you need to get boiling and no throwing away of any bones.

Use good quality bones, ideally from grass-fed animals, as the better the animal has been looked after the healthier they tend to be.

Chuck your post-roast bones in large pan, or better still a slow-cooker, add a splash or two of apple cider vinegar – this helps to pull out important nutrients from the bones – or fresh lemon juice, chopped up onion, a carrot or two – you could also add chopped up fennel or celery (and the leaves) and ginger and chilli for a more warming broth – 1 tbsp black peppercorns, 2 bay leaves, bunch of fresh herbs, then pour enough cold water to cover the bones by 5cm.

Cover with a lid and bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for at least 12 hours, longer for beef or lamb, the longer the bones simmer the more nutrients are released.

Strain the liquid and drink immediately or leave to cool before storing. A layer of fat will harden on top. This layer protects the broth beneath, discard this layer only when you are about to eat the broth.

You can also freeze in batches, ice-cube trays are a great idea, to add to soups, stews or a base to cook grains and pulses.