How to make your beef stock taste really good.
Beef stock is made by roasting beef neck and shin bones (full of marrow) to a nice dark brown colour in a hot dry oven to bring out the flavour and colour. In this recipe, I will show you how I make beef stock. When I had a restaurant I would make beef stock every week, let it settle overnight, and the fat rises to the top of the stockpot. Then remove the fat the next day after the stock has chilled, and keep the fat for cooking beef dishes.
Use trimmings and offcuts to save money
I would use up all the meat and vegetable trimmings from my recipe preparation. A good beef stock recipe remains the same forever, and should not change once you are happy with the results. Also remember the flavour is in the fat, so use up those trimmings.
Tested with time
I have been using this beef stock recipe for 40 years, it is similar to what I learned at culinary school all those years ago. The stock tastes much better with fresh meaty bones, but you may find them hard to get these days as some food production companies make stocks and sell them.
Great sauce start with tasty stocks
Get started on your beef stock
To get started you will need fresh neck and shin bone cut in 100mm/4 inch lengths. Then you add some meat scraps, chefs will often do their own butchery to save money and the beef trimmings are saved throughout the week and frozen. Then when the chef makes beef stock he will pull out the scrapes from the freezer and add them to the bones roasting tray.
Tomato paste adds colour and flavour
Next, I will add some tomato paste, the tomato paste add flavour and colour as the bones roast. Then I would roast the meat, bones and tomato paste for about 45 minutes or until the stock base was nice and brown and fill the room with that delectable aroma.
Get organised to save time
While the stock base is roasting I would prepare the vegetable mirepoix (large dice). I would peel carrots, onions and celery and cut them into 2-3 cm/1 inch cubes. Then wash, trim and dice the leek. (use only the white and light green parts of the leek)
Large stock pots get very heavy
When the beef bones are nicely coloured a dark brown, remove the tray from the oven and place the roasted beef, bones and tomato paste into a large stockpot and half fill the pot with cold water. Place the stockpot on the stove before adding the water as it will get heavy. Turn the stockpot on moderate heat and start to bring it to a simmer.
Caramelize your root vegetables for better flavour and colour
Place the vegetables into the roasting pan and roast in the beef fat until lightly caramelised and aromatic. Then add the vegetables to the warming stock. This can be done on the stovetop if you have a thick bottom pan, or in the oven, near the top for colouring and caramelization of the mirepoix.
Don’t forget the herbs and seasoning
After the stock has simmered for 4 hours you will need to add some peppercorns, thyme, parsley stalks and bay leaf. Garlic may be added if it is needed, I prefer to add Garlic if needed in the end products, soups or sauces. Overcooked garlic becomes bitter. Stock is a base product from which sauces, gravies, soups and casseroles are made, so do not add salt either.
Make a great red wine sauce, the easy way.
After you have made a delicious beef stock next comes the steak sauce. Start by reducing your beef stock to intensify the flavour.
A simple way to make a great red wine sauce is to add some claret (any dry red wine) to your reduced beef stock, about 20% is good. Bring to a simmer for a few minutes to let the alcohol evaporate and thicken with a good quality gravy base like Masterfoods rich gravy mix. Then enjoy it.
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Beef Stock Recipe
You must check the labels of the ingredients for common food allergens, such as dairy, eggs, gluten & wheat, sesame, sulphites, lupins, soy & soybeans, tree nuts, peanuts, fish, shellfish. While we take steps to minimize risk, manufacturers may change their formulations without our knowledge.
- Chef Knife
- Large Stainless Steel Pot
- Digital Scales
- Chinois (a conical sieve)
- 2.2 kg beef bones shin and rib bones
- 130 g leek trimmed and washed
- 130 g celery washed and diced
- 250 g carrots peeled and diced
- 250 g onion peeled and diced
- 6 l water cold
- 5 g salt
- 2 g pepper black, cracked
- 5 g thyme fresh
- 20 g parsley fresh, stalks
- 2 bay leaf
Recipe food cost estimate
- $13.49 total ingredients food cost.
Recipe preparation time estimate
- 20 minutes approximately, plus add the cooking time.
total food cost
- Wash the bones in cold water to remove any blood if needed.
- Place all the ingredients (except herbs) into the stockpot and cover with cold water.
- Bring the water to a mild simmer and skim off any scum with a flat ladle from the opposite side to the rising, bubling, simmering water.
- Add the bouquet garni (herbs tied in kitchen twin for easy removal) for 2 hours. Or remove the herbs with a perforated scoop.
- Skim the stock every hour to remove the scum and fat that may rise to the surface.
- Strain the chicken stock through a fine-mesh chinois or gauze strainer.
Storage and safety
- Cool and refrigerate the beef stock, you need to cool the beef stock as quickly as possible. Food safety regulations say you must reduce the core temperature below 5°C/4°0F in under 4 hours.
- Freeze the beef stock, ice trays work great for home. Old ice-cream containers work well in hospitality businesses.
- Buying proper containers is always the best option. All chilled and frozen food should be labelled and dated.
- Placing the stock in small, flat containers helps disperse heat. Unfortunately storing liquids in flat containers can lead to spillage.
- Never store liquids above shoulder height.
- Cool the stock over night to remove any fat that rises to the top. Put the stock into a wide shallot pot and simmer rappidly to reduce the stock and improve the flavour.