Illustration for article titled The Difference Between Lager and BrothPhoto: AS Food Studio (Shutterstock)The adult kitchenThe adult kitchenWelcome to The Grown-Up Kitchen, Skillet’s series designed to answer your most basic culinary questions and fill in any gaps in your chef’s education.

Broth and broth are very similar liquids and can be used interchangeably in many recipes without incident. There are some key differences between them, however, the primary being a bone matter.

In its simplest form, broth is the liquid meat that has been cooked in. There are vegetarian variations on the theme, such as vegetable broth and bean broth, which are simply the liquid that vegetables or beans are cooked in, although some people might argue that technically they are not a broth because of their lack of meat. (I’m not that kind of a believer, but you know they’re out there.)

Illustration for article titled The Difference Between Lager and Broth

Stick, on the other hand, implies the presence of bones – bones that have been boiled for hours to extract their collagen (which turns into gelatin). This gives the stick its rich body and causes it to gel when it cools. These bones – which are very valuable– are traditionally cooked with carrots, onions and celery, but are not seasoned. (Full disclosure: I add salt to my broth, damn it.) Roasting the bones beforehand can give your broth a little more flavor and a deeper color, but you can make broth with unroasted bones if you wish .

I’m sure you’ve seen vegetable broth for sale, but this stuff is broth the way almond milk is milk – it’s a convenient way to show the home cook how the product should be used in their cooking – because vegetables don’t Has bones. (Shellfish technically don’t have either, but I like it their exoskeletons simmer and call it “camp”; I am comfortable with it mainly because of the shrimp shells contain some collagen.)

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Whatever. Broth is also more of a finished product, while broth is meant for cooking. You can certainly cook with broth – nothing terrible will happen to you – but it won’t have the body you got from the supply, and the broth is always seasoned; You should be able to sip on it and find it comfortable, or toss in some noodles and call it a soup. It’s also lighter in body and color, and doesn’t usually gel when cooled due to its shorter cooking time and / or lack of bone. (Broth can have bones in it if the meat clings to them, but it can also be made from boneless meat like chicken breasts.)

Illustration for article titled The Difference Between Lager and Broth

Although “broth” technically refers to any liquid that has been used to cook a piece of meat, my favorite method of making chicken broth is to poach an entire chicken with it AA Newton’s method. I put the chicken in a saucepan and dip it in water. Be sure to fill the cavity so that it stays under the water and add some sliced ​​ginger, garlic, green onions, sugar, and salt. I then bring it to a boil, simmer for about half an hour, then cut off the heat, cover it, and let it steep for at least two hours, sometimes longer.

This process not only results in a tender, juicy, aromatic bird, but also a cracking broth that – once cooled sufficiently – is practically edible. After eating the chicken, I toss the bones in my instant pot along with some scraps of vegetables Bay leaf, and some ACV to extract the collagen and cook everything under high pressure for an hour. (You can also let the carcass simmer on the stove for a few hours for the same results.)

But what about bone broth? What the hell is that?

Illustration for article titled The Difference Between Lager and Broth

“Bone broth” is mostly a marketing term for expensive, flavored stocks meant to be sipped. The main difference between “normal” traditional broth and bougie bone broth is in taste – like any other broth, bone broth is a finished product meant to be sipped, meaning someone has taken the time to add salt, pepper, herbs and / or add aromatic roots and powders to make it taste good enough to drink. But it’s still in stock.

In all honesty, what I do and call “share” probably falls into this hybrid category: I like it Season my supply because I think it creates a tastier foundation on which to base my sauces and sauces. Traditional? Delicious? Yes. (Once you understand the rules, feel encouraged to bend or break them.) Just don’t let anyone tell you that bone or meat water has magical healing properties. Both broth and broth can certainly feel so restful that you are comfortable with good food, but bones can only do so much.