Herbal Broth (photo by Anna Marie Beauchemin)
Herb-Infused Bone Broth
Immune Supportive Foods + Herbs
This broth not only utilizes a variety of vitamin and mineral-rich vegetables representing a lovely array of colors, but also contains a healthy dose of some of my favorite immune-supportive herbs such as garlic, reishi, and astragalus. Add some bones to the mix and you have yourself an excellent source of many of the essential fatty acids needed for our immune systems to run properly. This broth is a staple ingredient in my kitchen fall through spring. I make it in big batches and freeze it for later use, infusing it into all of the bases for my soups, stews, and grains cooked in broth. It can be enjoyed on its own when you need a little extra nourishment or infused with additional herbs such as garlic, thyme, and ginger when you're feeling under the weather and want a little extra boost. This recipe was inspired by not only the kitchen wisdom of my mothers but by the knowledge and tradition of herbalism as well some of my favorite holistic nutritionists.
Astragalus Root (photo by Anna Marie Beauchemin)
Herb-Infused Bone Broth Recipe
1-2 lbs chicken wings/backs/thighs (leave our for a vegetarian broth)
1-2 onions, diced
2-3 carrots, sliced
3-4 stalks celery, sliced
3-4 cloves smashed garlic
1/4 bunch parsley
1 2-3-inch-piece kombu seaweed
5-7 slices dried astragalus root or reishi mushroom slices
2-3 bay leaves
3-5 sprigs of thyme
1 tsp black peppercorns
1/2 tsp sea salt/himalayan salt
Optional Add-Ins: shiitake/maitake mushrooms, leeks, shallots, sweet potatoes, red-skinned potatoes, yams, whatever other kitchen scraps you have lying around that you want to use up
My preferred way to make this broth is by using the leftover carcass from a recently roasted chicken. If I need to make a batch and have not recently roasted a chicken, I'll purchase 1-2 lbs of chicken thighs, wings, or backs from the butcher and roast them at 375 for about 20 minutes before adding to the stock. If you prefer to make this broth vegetarian you can omit the chicken and add the optional add-ins listed at the end of the recipe. Add chicken and all of the other ingredients to a large stockpot (one that holds at least 3 quarts of water) and cover with water. Slowly bring to a boil and reduce heat so that the broth is at a gentle simmer (very small bubbles rising to the surface) and cook for 3-4 hours or until chicken bones begin to fall apart. Once your broth is done remove it from the heat, let it cool slightly, and then strain the veggies/chicken away from both. Let the broth cool on the counter until it reaches room temperature. You can use the broth immediately or portion it into smaller containers and freezer for later use. Make sure to label each container with the date, what it is, and whichever herbs you added to the brew.
Note: The information is for educational, historical, and research purposes, and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information on this site should not be used as medical advice. If you have a medical concern please seek out a qualified health care professional, and always consult your physician before adding herbal supplements into your diet, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, or on medication. Do not consume alcohol if you are under the age of 21 years old.