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Old 08-02-2012, 01:06 AM   #11
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Old 08-02-2012, 01:36 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stock Pot View Post
Given a choice between the two, which would you prefer for making a stew or pot roast:

Fresh herbs but canned stock, or

Dried herbs but home made stock (made with dried herbs)

??
Welcome to DC! I use homemade stock but dried herbs...I add the fresh herbs the last 5 minutes. The exception is that I always use fresh bay leaves--I break the leaf before I put it in the pot. Here's a link re: fresh vs. dried that might answer your question:

http://cookingfortwo.about.com/od/in...driedherbs.htm
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Old 08-02-2012, 01:51 AM   #13
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imo, a good canned stock isn't far off from a fresh one, but there's a huge range of error with dried herbs versus fresh, so i'm in the canned stock/fresh herbs camp.

good question. a culinary quintessential duality.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:18 AM   #14
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No canned stock--I would use beer instead! :)
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:31 AM   #15
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We try to make fresh stock and freeze it for later use. Quite often we just don't have the time to make a new batch when we run low. Generally we use dry herbs at the beggining of a dish and reinforce with fresh at the end.
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:01 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stock Pot View Post
Given a choice between the two, which would you prefer for making a stew or pot roast:

Fresh herbs but canned stock, or

Dried herbs but home made stock (made with dried herbs)

??
IMO its rather pointless to use fresh herbs when braising meat.
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Old 08-02-2012, 10:13 AM   #17
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For this purpose, assuming cost and time aren't an issue, dry herbs/home made stock. Especially if you're talking beef. No canned is worthy of the name, mostly they taste like the can. For some reason I don't mind pre-made chicken "stock" products as much as beef (although i still prefer pastes and granuals to can). And since you're doing long cooking, dry herbs are fine. Some fresh really need to be put in at the end, long-cooking doesn't improve them.
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:13 PM   #18
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I have tried to find a decent canned/boxed/concentrated stock, in stores and online, with only the most limited success. MoreThanGourmet products came closest to acceptable. So I use only homemade stock. It's simply too easy (and cheap) to make to use a poor alternative.

For example, every so often, I buy a "family pack" of chicken parts, usually thighs, and toss them in oil and salt and roast them for a bit over an hour in a 400F oven. If I want a few thighs for meals, I set some aside. The rest, I split and put into the pot with celery, onions, and carrots and an herb bouquet from the garden and simmer for four or five hours, and strain. That family pack is generally five or six pounds, and with a third of it held out for meat, the rest makes several 2-cup batches of stock frozen in reusable freezer containers. (There are two of us, and two cups make a good portion for most things.) If I used the whole "family pack," I could have a couple of gallons of stock for maybe seven dollars. I could make even cheaper stock if I used more chicken and had enough bones left over. This is much superior stock than any store product, and it's hardly any work at all, considering that I get two or three chicken meals out of it, also. And the bonus chicken fat (schmaltz) skimmed from the chilled stock is useful.

The herbs come from culinary garden planters out back, and I roughly chop and freeze herbs that won't winter over. I have no prejudice about dried herbs. I just have the fresh and frozen always at hand.

I don't make fish stock ahead. Seafood stocks are too easy to do with trimmings on the spot.
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:35 PM   #19
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What GLC said. I don't roast mine first--might have to try that some day. Some day when the temperature falls down out of the triple digits.
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