Cast-Off Veggie Stock
by Paige Okun
Use the ends of carrots, celery and onions that you'd normally toss away to make economical, sodium-free, chemical-free veggie stock that is so much more flavourful than store-bought stock.
When prepping salads or other dishes throughout the week, save the washed ends of your carrots and onions, and the bottom of your celery bunches in a freezer bag. You can also toss in carrots and celery that have wilted beyond saving. Cut down larger pieces into two-to-three inch chunks. When your freezer bag is full, use the cast-off veggie parts to make stock.
Note: For onions, you don't need to peel the tops, but make sure they are washed well. For celery, remove the leaves before freezing. These tend to give off an odd, funky flavour in the stock.
Simply put roughly equal portions of each vegetable into a large stock pot. Aim for about 5-6 cups of vegetable parts. Then, fill the pot with water up to about 2 inches from the top. You want a little room for it to boil. Bring the the mixture to a boil. Then cover and simmer for about two hours on a very low heat, with the top slightly askew to let steam escape. Check it every once and awhile and stir. Mixture will reduce a little and become fragrant. It should turn a lovely golden brown colour.
Cool the stock and strain it through a fine mesh strainer. Don't push down on the veggies. You want a clarified stock.
Freeze in one or two cup portions until ready to use.