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Old 01-25-2014, 12:02 PM   #1
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Beef & Vegetable Soup.

I am on a soup kick.
I am thawing out some stew beef I bought. Its about 1.5 pounds.
I have the regular stuff like celery, carrots, potato's and onions.
I do not have any beef bones.

How important would it be to make a beef stock first? I can go to the store and get some bones. Then roast them and make stock.

If I do not get any bones, would browning the beef chunks then adding water and simmering until tender be as good?

My gut tells me to go and get the bones and make a stock first. (I then will have beef stock to make French Onion soup another day).
And since I assume I will be going to the store, any vegetable that is a must in this type of soup that I should pick up.

Any and all suggestions accepted and appreciated.
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Old 01-25-2014, 12:08 PM   #2
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Barley would be a wonderful addition. Turnips or parsnips would be nice too. I make soup without browned bone stock, just brown the beef, but that would certainly add some great flavor. I use Better than Boullion. A bit of red wine can be good (in the soup too!)
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Old 01-25-2014, 12:23 PM   #3
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I agree. Barley.
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Old 01-25-2014, 12:47 PM   #4
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Making a beef stock takes many hours to properly extract full flavor from the bones. Chicken stock, not so much. You may want to make a soup in a shorter period of time. I use beef broth or beef base for beef soups.

Always brown meats going into soups, stews and braises. Brown (not grey, dark brown-the color of dark chocolate) is the color of great flavor. Don't forget to deglaze the pan you use for the browning. Those brown bits are full of flavor.
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Old 01-25-2014, 02:20 PM   #5
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Making a beef stock takes many hours to properly extract full flavor from the bones. Chicken stock, not so much. You may want to make a soup in a shorter period of time. I use beef broth or beef base for beef soups.

Always brown meats going into soups, stews and braises. Brown (not grey, dark brown-the color of dark chocolate) is the color of great flavor. Don't forget to deglaze the pan you use for the browning. Those brown bits are full of flavor.
Thanks Andy. The bones are roasting at this very moment. I will brown up the aromatics in the stock pot before adding the beef bones and water.
These bones were just cut for me at the store.

How long should I simmer the stock. I simmer my chicken stock for up to 4 hours. Lightly simmer.
Should I go longer on the beef bones? I have all day. I make the soup tomorrow.

I guess I could have put the aromatics in the oven with the bones?
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Old 01-25-2014, 02:27 PM   #6
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...How long should I simmer the stock. I simmer my chicken stock for up to 4 hours. Lightly simmer.
Should I go longer on the beef bones? I have all day...I guess I could have put the aromatics in the oven with the bones?

For the bones, 12 hours is not too long. Remember you're dealing with much bigger bones with thicker cross sections.

Yes, you could have roasted the aromatics.
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Old 01-25-2014, 02:28 PM   #7
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I absolutely need cabbage in my beef soup. To me it's just not the same without it.
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Old 01-25-2014, 02:56 PM   #8
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For the bones, 12 hours is not too long. Remember you're dealing with much bigger bones with thicker cross sections.

Yes, you could have roasted the aromatics.
I had the butcher cut the bones into rounds. About 3/4" thick. I roasted them for 45 minutes @ 375, then broiled them for a few more minutes to brown more.
I was worried that all the marrow was going to melt away.

Anyway, I hope I bought enough bones. I only have about two(2) pounds.
And I want enough stock for two dishes.
The butcher was sawing them up for me. I should have just taken all he had out. Hindsight.

Thanks
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Old 01-25-2014, 03:45 PM   #9
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When I have no bones, I brown my meat and veggies on med high and get a really nice layer of fond going before putting in my water or stock.You will get a really good color and flavor from this. Of course home made stock is best, but if I don't have any that doesn't stop me from making soup. The bought ones are pretty good and will do in a pinch.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:54 AM   #10
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Add 1/2-- 1 teaspoon of curry powder with your aromatics. It won't give you an Indian 'curry' flavor but it makes beef taste amazing. I like Barley with my beef soup too. I use Pearl barley.
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:41 AM   #11
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It is the end of the month and I didn't bother to buy too many meats for the month. So I have been winging it until the first when I get my food stamps. I have plenty of can goods in the cabinet. Enough seasonings, Some of this, some of that. So in February it will be "fill up the freezer." I get the family packs and divide it up into single servings. I do want to go to the butcher and get some special cuts of beef. And some two inch pork chops for stuffing.

I am going to look for those egg rolls that I remember the names of. Chung King for one. And I want to find a reasonable fatty piece of chuck for beef stew. I also have to remember to buy barley. I should have been buying for winter weather in November. Not now. I am going to be having a long grocery list this time.
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Old 01-26-2014, 12:42 PM   #12
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Thanks.
The stock did not color as well as I expected. Its not as dark colored as expected.
Maybe I did not color the bones long enough?

Yes, I am browning the meat, then the veggies before adding the stock I made yesterday. Brown them well.

Any suggestions on the stock? I expected brown colored stock and I got just a bit darker than my chicken stock.

More bones? Roast bones longer? Add coloring agent?

Oh. Barley. Is it like rice and will absorb stock? I take this into account when I add noodles for example. Do you use the barley in addition to the vegetables or just barley and omit the veggies?
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Old 01-26-2014, 12:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roll_Bones View Post
Thanks.
The stock did not color as well as I expected. Its not as dark colored as expected.
Maybe I did not color the bones long enough?

Yes, I am browning the meat, then the veggies before adding the stock I made yesterday. Brown them well.

Any suggestions on the stock? I expected brown colored stock and I got just a bit darker than my chicken stock.

More bones? Roast bones longer? Add coloring agent?

Oh. Barley. Is it like rice and will absorb stock? I take this into account when I add noodles for example. Do you use the barley in addition to the vegetables or just barley and omit the veggies?
I haven't made beef stock often, so take my comments with a grain of salt. One "trick" to get stock to be darker is to be sure to include onion skins with the bones.

How long did you roast the bones? Were they quite dark?

Barley will absorb some of the stock. I once added too much barley to a beef and barley soup and we ended up with a beef and barley stew. Yes, I had vegis in it too.
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Old 01-26-2014, 01:01 PM   #14
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Yes, I've done the same with barley, don't add too much! Barley does add a nice "chew" and flavor to vegetable beef soup. Definitely include it with vegetables.
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Old 01-26-2014, 01:17 PM   #15
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I haven't made beef stock often, so take my comments with a grain of salt. One "trick" to get stock to be darker is to be sure to include onion skins with the bones.

How long did you roast the bones? Were they quite dark?

Barley will absorb some of the stock. I once added too much barley to a beef and barley soup and we ended up with a beef and barley stew. Yes, I had vegis in it too.
No. They did not brown much in the oven. The marrow was melting away and I did not want to lose it all.
I had the butcher cut the bones into rounds. Maybe I should have left them whole? Just cut so they fit in the soup pot?
I only roasted them for about an hour.

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Yes, I've done the same with barley, don't add too much! Barley does add a nice "chew" and flavor to vegetable beef soup. Definitely include it with vegetables.
I learned with egg noodles. I added half a bag and should have just added a handful. They sure did drink up my soup.

Anyway the final product will be assembled and simmered this afternoon.
I will give feedback, provided I am still a member of the forum.
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Old 01-26-2014, 01:22 PM   #16
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You get more flavour out of smaller pieces of bone, than you do leave them in big pieces. You can deglaze the roasting pan to get all the browned goodness off of it. If I were concerned about losing the marrow, I would pull it out of the bones after they have been roasting for a while. I think it should be fairly easy to pull out after it has shrunk a bit from rendering fat.
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Old 01-26-2014, 02:04 PM   #17
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You get more flavour out of smaller pieces of bone, than you do leave them in big pieces. You can deglaze the roasting pan to get all the browned goodness off of it. If I were concerned about losing the marrow, I would pull it out of the bones after they have been roasting for a while. I think it should be fairly easy to pull out after it has shrunk a bit from rendering fat.
Yes. I never made beef stock before. I was hoping the bones would brown more than they did.
Is that solid white bone to turn brown? It seemed even when I turned on the broiler that the bone itself was not going to get brown.
Thats why I finally pulled them out of the oven.

I will try making the stock again soon. I am certain the stock I made will be good for the soup as I plan to brown up the meat real good before adding it. Its gotta be better than water......lol

Thanks for all the feedback!

ps.........How long should I have roasted the bones and what temp?
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Old 01-26-2014, 03:02 PM   #18
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I follow Julia Child's instructions. From The Way to Cook,
Browning the bones--30 to 40 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 450F. Arrange the bones and 1/2 cup each of the chopped vegetables in the roasting pan and brown in the upper third of the oven, turning and basting with accumulated fat several times until they are a good walnut brown, step 2. Scoop bones and vegetables into the kettle; pour out and discard accumulated fat.
She then goes on to tell you to deglaze the roasting pan add that to the kettle and simmer the stock 4-5 hours. She also mentions the use of a herb bouquet, skimming off the foam, and straining the resulting stock.
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Old 01-26-2014, 03:04 PM   #19
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I never would have thought to baste them. Good info.
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Old 01-26-2014, 03:16 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Roll_Bones View Post

Yes. I never made beef stock before. I was hoping the bones would brown more than they did.
Is that solid white bone to turn brown? It seemed even when I turned on the broiler that the bone itself was not going to get brown.
Thats why I finally pulled them out of the oven.

I will try making the stock again soon. I am certain the stock I made will be good for the soup as I plan to brown up the meat real good before adding it. Its gotta be better than water......lol

Thanks for all the feedback!

ps.........How long should I have roasted the bones and what temp?
I'm not positive but I don't think it's the bones you are browning so much as the marrow, fat, and any remnants of meat and blood on/in the bones. The bones themselves may not really brown but just have streaks of browned areas where there was blood or meat on them. I agree with Taxy that you can remove the marrow if you don't want to lose it and that you should deglaze the roasting pan. And smaller bones are definitely the way to go because then the water actually reaches all of the marrow. Too large and you may have marrow trapped in the bone that can't add flavor to the stock.

Other than that, I know the best homemade beef stock I've had was made with beef heart that had been browned and then used to make the stock. I haven't tried making it myself this way, just got to eat the results. I've also had soup made with grilled beef and that was pretty amazing too.

One thing my dad taught me about making beef soups is that whenever you cook a steak or hamburger or beef of any kind, if you aren't already going to deglaze the pan for what you are making, deglaze it with just a little water and freeze the results. Keep a container that you add to each time. Eventually you'll have enough to add to a stock or make a gravy or whatever. It's not easy to get a strong beef flavor so this can be a big help.

I find roasted/browned carrots add an amazing flavor to beef broth. I also like browned onion and roasted or browned garlic. Roasted tomatoes or peppers (sweet, green, or chilis, they all work) are really good too. And I like to add something to give it a "green" flavor. Depending on what I'm going for this might be celery, spinach, green beans, or even bok choy. And rutabega is really good in beefs soups. Roasted cauliflower and brocoli are good. Zuchini and yellow crook neck are good too. Oh, sweet potato is awesome in beef soup.

I love bay leaf or rosemary in beef soups. Parsely, oregano, and basil are good too.

A little soy sauce added to the broth can give it a little extra "something". Just use a little so it's a highlight instead of a prominent flavor and remember to reduce/omit the amount of salt you are adding. A little balsamic or cider vinegar can be really good, especially if you are adding sweeter vegetables. Worcestershire or steak sauce can also add a little something extra. I add it to the meat as it's cooking, not to the stock. I think it comes out with a better flavor that way and also gives the meat it's own flavor in the soup.

I also love asian inspired beef soups too so that is another direction you could explore eventually. Add various asian flavorings, spices, and vegetables. Beef soup that tastes like a good shredded beef taco is really good. Add a little lime, lots of corriander, garlic, onion, and maybe peppers, with tortilla strips added just before serving. Or use your favorite carne asada recip and adjust that into a soup.

Sorry, I know this comes a little late for your current soup but maybe it will be useful next time.
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