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Homemade Beef Stock

Making your own stock is really special, it produces an incredible depth of flavour that’s unmatched in shop-bought stock in our opinion. It’s also a fantastic way to use up vegetables that may be looking a little tired and past their best, or parts of the veg that may otherwise be discarded such as peelings, tops, and tough stalks.

The following is a guide so feel free to use whatever you have to hand. We say the bones, onions, and carrots are non-negotiables, but everything else is inter-changeable and can be swapped out - starchy vegetables like potatoes are best avoided though. We find hardy winter herbs like sage, rosemary and thyme work well in beef stock but only use a little as you don’t want the flavours to be overpowering. The seafood is optional, but it does give the stock an added kick of umami. It’s a small amount and won’t make the stock taste fishy.


The recipe will make approximately two and a half litres of stock, but it can very easily be halved, doubled, tripled…. depending on the size of your stock pot. We suggest making a big batch and freezing what you don’t plan to use immediately in plastic bottles or containers.


Time: 4 hours 30 minutes +

2 bags of beef bonesstock, marrow, or a combination of the two

Olive oil

2 onions, roughly chopped

1 carrot, roughly chopped (or the peel from 6 carrots)

1 stick of celery, roughly chopped

1 leek, roughly chopped (or the trimmed soft green tops of 4 leeks)

1 whole bulb of garlic, halved horizontally – no need to peel it!

A splash of red wine (optional)

3 salted anchovies (optional)

1 tbsp tomato puree

A handful of parsley, roughly chopped (or the stalks from a whole bunch – saving the leaves for another dish)

A few sprigs of thyme

3 bay leaves

4 whole cloves

1 tsp black peppercorns

1 sheet of kombu (optional)


Make a note of the weight of the bones. You’ll want to add the one and a half times this weight in water later on - i.e. 2kg bones = 3 litres of water.


This next step isn’t essential but the extra flavour you’ll gain from the caramelisation of roasting the bones is well worth it – Pre-heat the oven to 200 °C. Rub the bones all over with olive oil and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Add them to a roasting tin and roast in the preheated oven for 1 hour. Once done allow the bones to cool.


Drain the bones of the oily fat. Pour the fat into your stock pot (or use 2 tbsp of olive oil, if you’re not roasting the bones). Over a medium heat, fry all the vegetables for 15 minutes.


De-glaze the pan with some wine if you like, and add the rest of the ingredients (except the kombu). Fry for two more minutes. Add the bones, then add the water and kombu (if using) - If the water doesn’t cover the bones add a little bit more.


Turn up the heat and bring to a gentle simmer. Turn the heat to low and simmer for at least 3 hours. (The longer the cooking time, the richer the stock will become but you’ll have less stock in volume.)


Once the stock has reduced to your liking, season with some salt if you wish. Allow the stock to cool until the fat starts to solidify on the top. Strain the stock through a colander first, then through a sieve, and finely through muslin or fine cloth if you’d like the stock to be clear.


Store in the fridge or freezer until ready to use.


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