Tate & Lyle
Carst and Walker

Bone broth: the trend everyone’s raging about

To some it’s just a souped up stock, but advocates say there’s more involved – and, given that we’ve been eating it for centuries, is there really something special about it?

Move over kale smoothies … the elixir currently getting everyone, from chefs to cynical New Yorkers, in a lather is an altogether different drink: hot, life-affirming and meaty. Bone broth is made by simmering animal bones (usually beef or chicken) for a very long time, to extract maximum flavour and goodness. But is it – as online sceptics suggest – just stock with a makeover and good PR, or is there more to bone broth than that?

Broth is as old as the hills, but it has gained new momentum. New York chef Marco Canora opened a takeaway hatch outside his East Village restaurant late last year, called it Brodo (Italian for broth), and started dispensing chicken, beef and turkey broths with extras such as bone marrow, ginger juice or roasted garlic puree.

Within weeks, Brodo was attracting long lines, and lots of US press coverage. Broth is also gaining popularity in LA (it is a paleo diet favourite), where delivery services wing quarts of (presumably well-sealed) meaty goodness to lazy celebs. There is even, wait for it, bone broth for cats.

So far, so cronut. Unlike recent food fads, though, the bone broth craze is not a novelty, but a reworking of the hearty stocks found in countless food cultures, from Italian to Vietnamese. Which is probably why any mention of the “bone broth” trend online sparks outrage from some quarters. “Bone broth is driving me nuts – it’s blinkin’ stock!” one well-known food writer told me.

In the UK, the best-known advocates of bone broth are healthy-eating writers Hemsley + Hemsley. Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley grew up drinking bone broth made by their Filipino mother, use it as a base for soups, stews and gravies, and add a dash to their scrambled eggs. Properly made broth has many benefits. “It’s delicious, soothing and easy to make,” say the sisters. “Nutritionally, it’s a champion all-rounder, packed with protein, vitamins, minerals, collagen and keratin.”

So why don’t they call it stock? Because, let’s be honest – when most of us see stock in a recipe, we’re more likely to reach for the Knorr than for a pot of slowly simmering beef bones we just happen to have on standby. “Stock can mean cubes, bouillon powder, veg stock or ready-made ‘fresh’ stocks sold in packets and cans. We refer to it as ‘bone broth’ to ensure people can differentiate,” say the Hemsleys…..

The Guardian: Read the full article

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