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Beef Stock Recipe

A good basis for all beef sauces, especially if making a Demi-Glace Sauce, for that special occasion.
Half the beef bones can be replaced with veal bones, but these can be harder to find for domestic users, and are fairly expensive, as they're in great demand by top-restaurants.
It's worth making the full amount, as it freezes well.

Ingredients

For about 2 litres:

2 -2½ kilos of beef marrow bones, sawn into pieces by your butcher (see photograph)

2 medium, unpeeled, onions - each stuck with 2 whole Cloves

2 old Carrots, washed, cut into big chunks

2 sticks of Celery, roughly-cut into lengths

1 Leek, split, and carefully washed

1 x 400gr/14 oz tin of Chopped Tomatoes and their juice

1 tablespoon (15ml) Tomato Purée

1 rounded teaspoon (5ml) Herbes de Provence - to give the stock individual character, we recommend that from www.gourmetherbs.co.uk (http://www.gourmetherbs.co.uk/) - containing green anise & lavender

2 Bay Leaves

1 teaspoon (5ml) whole Black Pepper Corns

4-6 cloves of Garlic - depended on their size

450ml/1 pint Dry White Wine

225ml/8 fl oz Sercial Madeira (optional, but for that special occasion)

3 litres/5¼ pints Water

Equipment needed: a large roasting tray; a stockpot big enough to hold all the ingredients - perhaps 6 litres/10½ pints.

Method

1.Heat the oven to 230C/450F/Gas 8.

2.Put the bones in the roasting tray and roast them for about 40 minutes, stirring them round occasionally, they should be starting to brown.

3.Add the onions, carrots, celery and leek to the bones, and cook for a further 30 minutes.

4.Remove the roasting tin from the oven carefully, and allow to cool for a few minutes.

5.Deglaze the roasting tray with half the wine, by scratching the base of the roasting tin to remove as much caramel as possible - the liquid should turn a pleasant brown.

6.Transfer the ingredients and their liquid into a big casserole, then add all the other ingredients.

7.Bring this mixture slowly to the boil on top of the stove, skimming off any froth if necessary.

8.Simmer the mixture for about 5 hours, then strain the liquid into a clean fresh container, discarding the solids, but squeezing as much juice from the vegetables as you go.

9.Cool the stock, then refrigerate.

Any fat that rises to the top can easily be removed, before using the stock.

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