My household has moved into a soothing soup phase, turning to root vegetables, squash, garlic and onions procured at the last farmers’ market. One way to enrich our soups and to save money is by making veggie broth from scratch. Rather than use whole vegetables, however, I save all the “trimmings” from carrots, celery, onions, kale and collard ribs, and mushroom, broccoli and cauliflower stems, and herb stalks. If using organic vegetables, you can even save onion skins and potato, turnip and parsnip peels. Try to avoid nightshade scraps (from tomatoes and peppers) and other foods that turn “slimy” quickly, such as zucchini ends and cilantro.
I keep trimmings in an unsealed bag in my refrigerator. In 7-10 days, I have enough to add to a pot (I use cast iron to enrich the broth) with water. Often I add a piece of kombu (seaweed) for a more nutrient-dense broth. Bring to a boil; then simmer for an hour or longer. Strain the veggie scraps and voila! Use this broth for soup, add to rice or quinoa, and more! Freeze excess broth for later use.
Learn more about Local Food Alliance: http://www.localfoodalliance.org/