When we talk about nose-to-tail eating, we mean we should try and use every last part of every carcass. The most under-rated parts of a carcass, in our opinion, are the bones. As well as being full of flavour, they’re packed with collagen and connective tissues that are appreciated for their nutritional value. People have long believed in the healing, health-giving and restorative properties of bone broths – look no further than the traditions of beef tea and chicken soup to see this is no new-fangled fad.
Ros Heathcote started Borough Broth Co. in 2015 when it became apparent to her that the world had lost its way when it came to stocks and broths. Stock cubes have led the field, really since the end of the Second World War, but many are chock-full of additives and most deliver a not-very-authentic flavour. Coming home from a busy day at work, Ros wanted to cook with fresh broth but making it from scratch in the evening, well, it was time-consuming. As no one else seemed to be making slow-cooked, unadulterated broths, Ros took the initiative and started making them herself.
An energetic advocate of all things brothy, even Ros was astonished by the response she got and by the demand that grew for her products. Today she works with a small team in her West London kitchen, making a range of pure, organic broths that contain only good stuff and deliver real depth of flavour. They can be enjoyed on their own or used as a basis for soups, sauces and gravies, in all sorts of recipes and with all styles of cuisine.
So what’s the secret to getting all this flavour and goodness out of bones? Springwater (none of your tap stuff here), organic bones (all lamb and beef bones come from Coombe Farm Organic) and a 24-hour simmer all play a significant part. There are some secret parts of the process (and Ros isn’t handing those over any time soon), but it’s the slow cook over a very gentle heat that’s crucial. Joint bones with plenty of connective tissue impart their goodness during the long hours of bubbling. At the end of the process, excess fat is removed to clarify the broth, leaving it pure and ready to use.
Although it might be odd coming from broth producers, the Borough Broth Co. team are firm advocates of people making their own stocks. They want to see us buy meat on the bone and make use of what would otherwise be a waste product. It might not be very quick, but it’s certainly not terribly difficult. And if you care about wholefoods and worry about unhealthy ingredients in processed products, you’d do worse than to start by making your own broth.
So ditch the stock cubes and join Borough Broth Co. and Coombe Farm Organic in enjoying one of frugal eating’s most versatile and good-for-you treats: a steaming bowl of bone broth.
PSSSST… For a luscious poultry gravy to compliment your roast bird, grab a pouch or two of Borough Broth Co.’s chicken broth and gently reduce it down to really intensify the flavours. Add extra dimensions of taste with the juices from the roasting tray, your favourite herbs and maybe a dollop of apple jelly.