Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Scotch Broth

Blessings, Darlings!

Today's foodie post is on Scotch Broth.  Which, while I guess back in the day WAS a broth, I serve as a soup with all the ingredients chopped and in it, rather than separated out as, well, Wikipedia says it had been served.  They also say folks peeled boiled potatoes before eating them, and that MUST be wrong.  Peasants like me don't throw potato peels out, they eat them!

But I digress....

Scotch broth is, fundamentally, "vegetable barley soup with lamb or mutton".  It's really flexible when it comes to amounts of all ingredients.  Being cheap, obviously I tend to use more veggies and barley than meat! Actually, I guess my Scotch  Broth is "pasties with lots of broth and no crust"!

Lamb is the meat I use - in part because I've never run into mutton where I've lived, and I have no idea if it's more or less expensive than lamb would be.  The lamb I'm using in today's batch is leftover from the leg of lamb I served last week.  I bought the leg of lamb (semi-boneless) just after Christmas, on its 'sell-by'date, so it was marked down in price.  I have about 2 cups of diced left over lamb.

The bone from the lamb is simmering in a quart of water, giving the last of its flavor up.  I'll add some chicken and beef bouillion cubes to the proto-broth to improve the flavor.  Equal parts of beef and chicken broth taste kinda sorta like veal broth, so they say.  I also use that mix as a lamb broth substitution.  The soup will need more liquid, and more cubes, by the time it's done.

Also simmering in bouillion is a cup of pearled barley.  Not my favorite kind of barley, but it's the most available barley. 

Soon I'll be cutting veggies.  Root veggies, mostly.  Carrots, onions, turnips (if I had any in the house, I'm out), potatoes since I don't have turnips, celery, some leftover green beans and mushrooms from the fridge, etc.  I'll add about 4 cups of them, since I'm using 2 cups of meat. If I had some butter beans/lima beans, I'd add some of them, too.

Bone will come out of the broth. Veggies will go in, and simmer until tender. Meat will be added. Barley will be added.  More beef/chicken bouillion will be added .... both for making it a soup-not-stew today and because the barley WILL absorb an incredible amount of liquid even after it's totally cooked.  That's because of all the soluble fiber in it, BTW.

I'll end up with about a gallon of soup.  Which is roughly 12 adult  meal-sized servings.

I'm ready for it NOW.

Frondly, Fern

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