Saturday, February 13, 2010

Broth Blocks

Part of home cooking is learning how to use everything to minimize waste and unnecessary expenses. This means making good use of leftovers, to be sure. But beyond that, it also means treating scraps and broths as precious ingredients for a future meal.

Blocks of frozen broth in the shapes of their containers start to thaw in a soup pot.

We will often have cooking liquids, soaking liquids, and broths left after cooking vegetables, reconstituting dried tomatoes, or poaching poultry or other meats. Each time we do, we pour the leftover liquids into a container and freeze them. We try our best to label them, but are not as vigilant as we should be about that. We are, however, getting better at avoiding the dreaded UFOs (unidentified frozen objects).

On Friday we decided that we should make a pot of soup over the weekend, so Ken and I rummaged through the freezer to find broths. We found a couple containers of Swiss chard broth, celery broth, pork and collard green broth, spinach broth, lentil broth and lentils, liquid from soaking dried tomatoes, and carrot and turnip trimmings (from making "turned vegetables") that had been blanched and frozen.

All the broths went into a pot to thaw and cook as a base for soup. We'll see what else gets added later. We got a lot of little things out of the freezer. Of course, there will be leftovers of the new soup to go back into the freezer, but not so much.


  1. You inspire me to be more organized in my kitchen. Seriously!

  2. Haha!! I thought it was soap, at first!!!

  3. When I saw the picture on this post, the first thing I thought was: "what a beautiful assortment of luxury soaps."

    I never would have guessed they were frozen leftovers.

  4. Hmmm :) I wouldn't have though to save these liquids, I must say. I hope you'll show us what else you end up putting in, and what it looks like :)


  5. What a colorful photo! I love soups, any kind of soups.

  6. I thought you were making soap, too.

    Soup, soap, either way a very artistic arrangement.

  7. We had soup today made with all these broths and vegetables, with barley added. Good. No need ever to throw away good vegetable broth, unless your freezer is too full.

  8. They may have made good soup, but they make a great photo.

  9. A good idea, but you must have a large freezer.

  10. Hmmm....amazing what you can do with left over veg...I hear NASA have a secret recipe for cauliflower and brussel sprout soup that they use to launch space shuttles with!!!!

    Hope you kept the windows open and no naked lights nearby....


  11. evol, that's the idea.

    suzanne, go for it!

    leesa, diogenes, soaps! That's funny!

    judy, it's the country life. One less trip to the store.

    nadege, as someone once said, "soup is good food."

    jean, nope.

    starman, I thought so.

    sue, we have a medium-sized chest freezer in the utility room.

    nick, well, they give us energy. But not that kind... ;)

  12. We do the same thing with left-over wine. After a dinner party we will empty the wine bottle into a small container or zip lock bag and freeze it. Then when we need a little wine for cooking we'll use a frozen container or bag.


Pour your heart out! I'm listening.