Everything you need to know about storing, re-heating and enjoying your beautiful, nourishing broths.
"my broth was delivered warm ... should I refrigerate it?"
Yes. I often deliver broths warm because they just came off of the stove. You can absolutely pop open your warm jar and enjoy a cup straightaway, but please refrigerate afterwards.
"how do i re-heat & enjoy?"
Reheat by gently shaking (simply turn the glass jar over and back upright a few times - make sure your lid is on really tightly first :), and then gently heating the portion you'd like to eat / drink right now. Try to avoid a full rolling boil in re-heating. We want gentle, nurturing, grounding energy. Less up and away, more solid and HERE.
"How do I re-heat cold (refrigerated) broth?"
When you're re-heating broth that's been refrigerated, poke a hole through the fat-cap, pour some broth through it, and then spoon a bit of the cold fat into your vessel for re-heating. You want to eat it, but you want to go slowly, especially if you're not accustomed to eating bone broths that are rich in fat.
"how long does fresh broth 'keep'?"
I recommend giving yourself one day to see how much broth you're going to drink before freezing it. The conservative estimate for refrigerated fresh broth is 3-4 days in the fridge. However, if you have an intact fat-cap that has formed on the surface of your jar, it is keeping an air-tight seal on your delicious broth. It will keep for far longer if you have an intact fat-cap on the surface. That said, we are dealing with a perishable product, so be mindful. Any portion you cannot eat within about five days should probably be frozen.
To freeze, transfer to a freezer safe vessel (I always break glass if I try to freeze it, so just humor me and don't do it), and pop into your freezer.
"What is this 'fat-cap' you're talking about?"
A fat-cap (a circular disc of cold fat) will form at the top of your jar once the contents have been refrigerated. This is totally normal and fine. Actually, it's what you're paying for - it is the gem of bone broths in my opinion. This nugget is loaded with healing collagen, proline, glutamine and glycine. This is where the stuff that heals your gut and nourishes your depleted soul is found.
The concentration of fat in the fat cap is dependent upon fat content in the animal bones and flesh. Sometimes you'll have lots. Sometimes you won't. Whatever you get, bless it and know that it is full of the saturated fats that support your brain function, create and regulate hormone production in your body and literally heal your leaky gut.
"What else can I do with this broth? not sure i can just drink it all?"
As drinking broth becomes a part of your daily wellness routine, you'll find it easier and easier to imagine how you're going to consume a whole gallon in one week. In the meantime, broth is so versatile.
Your broth can easily be turned into other meals that are simple. Add cooked rice, noodles or quinoa to a bowl of broth. Toss in a handful of fresh spinach and let it wilt when you're hankering for greens. Substitute your broth for water when you're cooking any savory grains. The broth brings added flavor and digestibility to grains that can be challenging for digestion. Add a tablespoon of miso and some fresh, seasonal veggies to your hot broth and you're in business. Float an egg on top of hot broth, or whip the egg in a bowl and drizzle it into your hot broth for easy-peasy egg-drop soup.
Broth is easy, forgiving, fast and seriously nourishing.
"What's this stuff at the bottom of my jar?"
My style of broth making is very rustic. You'll have bits of meat, an occasional piece of vegetable, herbs and perhaps even a black peppercorn slip through. I don't strain with a sieve, so as to get more of a "whole" feeling from the entire endeavor. These are always bits that have been in the pot during the entire cooking process (8-10 hours, usually).
Rest assured, anything you find at the bottom of your jar was intentionally included in your pot from the beginning. You can choose to eat it or not.
"THERE'S A BIT OF SOMETHING CRUNCHY IN HERE ..."
My style of broth making is very rustic. I do not strain through a sieve or cheesecloth. So, occasionally, you might see a teeny tiny nugget of something that resembles bone matter. Do not be alarmed, this is bone broth after all :) Just know that I cook my broths for a minimum of 8 hours, usually more, and that any bone matter you happen to come across will likely be so, so cooked that it will easily break apart and disintegrate into nothingness. But, be mindful, as you are with all products that contain(ed) animal products with bones - you might stumble upon one, although I highly doubt it.