There are a ton of nutritious and delicious benefits to making your own meat stock, and stock or broth made from pork bones is no exception.

In this recipe, we’re going to add a trotter (one of the pig’s feet) to send this stock to the moon with all that gelatinous goodness. Substitute this pork stock in recipes that call for chicken stock, especially soups and stews that feature beans, split peas, or any soup, stew, chowder or sauce where ham, bacon, and pork roast are the stars of the show.

Pork Stock

Makes about 3 quarts. If not using it all in your next recipe, pour into 1qt freezer bags or mason bars and store in the freezer.

Ingredients

  • 5 lbs of pork bones, ham hocks, or pork shanks, or a mix of any
  • 1 pig trotter, split
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 1 medium carrot, split and quartered
  • 2 celery ribs, sliced in half crosswise
  • 2 garlic heads, sliced in half
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 4 qts water

Method

  1. Add all ingredients to a large pot, adding the water last. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Lower heat to maintain the simmer for 5-6 hours, or until the meat on the trotter starts to float off the bone. Check occasionally to skim any foam off the top. Tweak the heat level if you feel its not simmering enough, just don't bring it to a boil. Boiling or stirring the stock while it reduces will make the stock cloudy.

  2. After you have a nice medium-dark broth and the meat that was formerly on the bones is floating around and generally tasteless, the stock it ready to strain.

  3. Fish out all the big chunks and compost or toss.

  4. Strain the liquid into a fine-mesh collander over a big bowl. You may need to strain in batches. 

  5. Let the stock cool completely.

  6. Thanks to the trotter, the cooled stock will be be like jelly. You want all that nutritious gelatin. Scrape off any white fat, then use immediately or divide into smaller portions (according to how you want to use the stock in the future) and freeze.

Notes

NOTE: Notice there is no salt in this recipe. Add salt to taste in the dish you will include this stock in.

FOR A DARKER STOCK: Roast the bones in the oven to get them nice and browned before adding to the stock pot.

Adapted by Next Chapter Farm from Chef April Bloomfield.