Title: How to Can Bone Broth at Home
Bone broth has gained popularity in recent years due to its health benefits and versatility in the kitchen. It is a nutritious and flavorful base for soups, stews, and sauces, packed with essential minerals, collagen, and amino acids. While it is easy to purchase bone broth from the store, there is something satisfying about making it at home. Additionally, canning bone broth can extend its shelf life and make it readily available in your pantry whenever you need it. In this article, we will take a closer look at how to can bone broth at home, ensuring you have a constant supply of this nourishing liquid gold.
Step 1: Prepare the Bone Broth
Before you can start canning bone broth, you need a delicious, nutrient-rich batch to work with. Here are a few tips to consider when preparing your bone broth:
1. Choose high-quality bones: Use bones from organic, pasture-raised animals whenever possible. This ensures the broth’s nutritional content and avoids any potential harmful additives.
2. Roast the bones: Roasting the bones before simmering them brings out more flavor and richness in the broth. Place the bones on a baking sheet and roast them in the oven at 400°F (200°C) for about 30 minutes, or until they turn golden brown.
3. Add aromatics: Enhance the flavor of your bone broth by adding aromatic vegetables like onions, carrots, and celery. You can also include herbs and spices such as bay leaves, thyme, or black peppercorns.
4. Simmer for a long time: For the best results, simmer your bone broth for at least 12-24 hours. This slow and low cooking method helps release all the nutrients and collagen from the bones.
Step 2: Canning Equipment and Safety
Canning bone broth requires specific equipment to ensure safety and prolong shelf life. Here’s what you need:
1. Mason jars: Use wide-mouthed mason jars for canning your bone broth. They are sturdy, heat-resistant, and seal tightly to retain freshness.
2. Pressure canner: Unlike some other foods, bone broth cannot be safely canned in a water bath canner. You must use a pressure canner to reach the necessary temperature for killing harmful bacteria.
3. Lids and rings: Ensure you have new, undamaged lids and rings for proper sealing.
4. Utensils: A jar lifter, canning funnel, and a ladle are handy tools to have when canning bone broth.
5. Clean workspace: Maintain a clean and organized workspace to minimize the risk of contamination.
Step 3: Canning Process
Now that you have your bone broth prepared and the necessary equipment ready, it’s time to start the canning process. Follow these steps:
1. Sterilize the jars: Before filling the jars, sterilize them by placing them in boiling water for 10 minutes. This eliminates any bacteria that may be present.
2. Fill the jars: Using a canning funnel, carefully ladle the hot bone broth into the sterilized jars, leaving about 1 inch of headspace. The headspace allows for expansion during the canning process.
3. Wipe the rims: After filling the jars, use a clean, damp cloth to wipe the rims, ensuring there are no spills or debris that could interfere with the sealing process.
4. Secure the lids: Place the lids on top of the jars and screw on the rings until they are snug but not overly tight. This allows air to escape during processing.
5. Process in the pressure canner: Follow the instructions for your specific pressure canner to process the bone broth jars. The recommended processing time for bone broth is about 75-90 minutes at 10-15 pounds of pressure.
6. Cool and store: Once the processing time is complete, turn off the heat and allow the canner to cool naturally. Do not open the canner until it has fully depressurized. Afterward, carefully remove the jars using a jar lifter and place them on a clean towel to cool. Make sure the lids have sealed before storing the jars in a cool, dark place.
My 2 Cents:
Canning bone broth not only extends its shelf life but also provides convenience and accessibility. It allows you to preserve the nutritious goodness of bone broth while having a ready-to-use ingredient in your pantry. When canning bone broth, always prioritize safety by using the appropriate equipment and following proper canning techniques. Remember to label your jars with the date and contents, so you can easily identify and rotate your stock. With homemade bone broth at your fingertips, you can elevate your cooking and enjoy the numerous health benefits that come with this nourishing elixir. Happy canning!