Beef stock very popular in the restaurants but unfortunately not so much in home cooking as require a long time of preparation. It is mainly used to make jus – the condensed meat sauce or Espagnole sauce.
For around 5l of beef stock you will need:
5kg beef bones – ask your local butcher if has any available
1 kg white onions
1 kg carrots – peeled
1 celery stick
3 parsley stalks
3 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
300g tomato paste
A hob, an oven, a baking tray, a 10 – 15l pot, a colander, a ladle, a container for ready stock
Heating up the oven to 180°C.
Place bones on the tray and roast in the oven. It can take up to one hour to get strong brown colour. Meantime prepare the vegetables. Roughly cut onions, carrots, leek and celery into chunky pieces, mix with tomato paste and put in the hot oven.
When both, bones and veg are ready, put them into a pot together with spices and herbs and cover with COLD water. Deglaze the tray as all the richest taste stay on it. To do this, put some water in and place on the burner. Water will help to melt natural caramel. Using the spatula scrape off all the leftovers and add to the pot. Bring to the boil on high heat, turn down and simmer on low fire for 6 – 12 hours. Absolute minimum is six hours to get reasonable stock. According to some schools, the beef stock should be on the fire for 24 – 48 hours. This changes the structure of the thick bones and lets more flavour be passed into the stock. Skim the fat that cumulates on top using a ladle. The more often you do this, the clearer will be the liquid.
Once the stock is ready, pass it into the container through the colander and set on a side to cool down. You can store it fresh up to 3 days but I would recommend to turn it straight away to the required sauce.
Beef stock ready!
photo: PEDEN & MUNK