Vegetable Stock

Vegetable Stock3

I learned the basics of cooking American food from my mother-in-law. She made everything from scratch because, back then, Indian grocery stores did not carry the kind of vegetables, herbs, pastas, sauces, and ingredients like they do today. She made her own whole wheat bread, peanut butter, mayonnaise, a variety of jams, soups, stews, and even complicated stuff like meatless salami. Her desserts were to die for – lemon pies with mile-high meringue, cakes, puddings, cookies, and brownies. The table was set for every meal. The laughter and stories that we shared around the table are memories that I will always cherish. My mother-in-law is beautiful, wise, strong, and more fun than a mother-in-law should be! Thank you, mom, for being such an incredible teacher.

I wanted to share a winter soup recipe with you today, but realized that one of the ingredients that I asked for was vegetable stock. So, first, let me share with you a simple vegetable stock recipe that I make very often. I think it is much better to make your own stock, because that way you control the amount of salt that you put into it. You could also buy low-sodium vegetable, chicken, fish or beef stock from the grocery store. But once you learn how to make it yourself, and you use it in making your soup – there is no going back to store-bought stock. It is by far one of the easiest things you can make, so let’s begin.

Vegetable Stock
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Makes: 4 cups of stock

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion
1 large red potato
3 carrots
3 celery stalks
6 mushrooms
3 garlic cloves
6 sprigs of parsley
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons soy sauce
8 cups water
salt to taste

Wash all the vegetables and give them a rough chop. You don’t even need to peel the onion or the garlic.

You need a large pot that will hold all the vegetables and the water. Heat the pot over medium-high heat. Add vegetable oil. When the oil shimmers add onion, potato, carrots, celery, mushrooms, and whole garlic cloves. Cook without stirring for about five minutes. Then stir infrequently, allowing the vegetables to get lightly brown. It will take about 10-15 minutes.

Add parsley, black peppercorns, bay leaf, soy sauce, and water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and allow the soup to simmer steadily. Cook for 45 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Strain, taste and add more salt if needed before storing. Use this stock for soups, stews and other recipes that call for vegetable stock.

6 thoughts on “Vegetable Stock

  1. Maggie – What a nice daughter-in-law you are to pay such nice compliments to your mother-in-law. I don’t know her that well, but got to know her over the past several years through her writings for the Women’s Devotional which I look forward to read every year.

    • Dearest Edna – What I said was from my heart. She was truly all that and more. She has a close relationship with God and set a wonderful example for me to follow.
      Thanks so much for your comment and I will tell her how much you enjoy her writing for the Women’s Devotional. I look forward to it too and that’s the first story that I read.

  2. Mom said that tears came to her eyes as she read the nice things you said about her. She mentioned feeling insecure about her cooking for a long time as it seemed she could never measure up to her own mother-in-law’s cooking. Perhaps appreciation from dad wasn’t as forthcoming as she wished.

    In my opinion mom was a fantastic cook – but what else is a daughter to say? Mom has given up fancy cooking and entertaining for a while now, so I must add that you are the better cook now.

    • Lorna girl – I was so touched when you called me last night and told me that mom was happy to read what I had written. I didn’t think I was doing anything special by writing about mom. I thought she always knew how much I admired her cooking and how I looked up to her.

      I helped my mom with cooking but never made even one meal at home before I got married! But I watched my mom while she cooked. When I got married and came to your home I pretended to know how to cook! Dad and mom allowed me to cook to my hearts content. They encouraged me and told me I was a great cook – I believed them! So a lot of credit for my cooking skills should go to them.

      I shouldn’t be saying all this on line I guess, but it’s true. Thanks for saying I’m a good cook – I guess mom and I have that in common. We aren’t quite sure about how good we are! Nice when people tell us!

      Love you,

    • Dear Sarah,

      Yours is the first compliment I received on my writing! Needless, to say I’m thrilled. Yes, I did write from my heart.

      Please stop by and visit again. Have a wonderful day.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>