Into Something Rich and Strange IV: Three Takes on Umami-Rich Seafood Stocks

Seafood stock, like bone broth, is a unique mix of of seemingly strange ingredients, a devotion to wasting nothing, and a rich result. Packed with umami, seafood stocks are fast to make, use few ingredients, and those ingredients are ones that are not only cheap, but would normally be thrown away or disregarded by our modern Western food culture.

Dill Pesto

The ingredients you can use to make pesto are plentiful and diverse. I use dill here, but you could also make pesto out of those carrot tops that you would normally throw away. Nettle—foraged from your own yard perhaps—also makes a fine pesto. You can use walnuts or pistachios instead of the usual pine nuts. Whatever you enjoy or have on hand will do! And best of all, it freezes well, so you can save some for later!

Seafood Stock

This recipe aims to inject as much flavor into your stock as possible, with the added bonus of using ingredients that normally would be considered trash, wasting nothing.

Herbes fondamentales

My fiancé created a spice mix that we as a base for seasoning in many of the Western dishes we make, which utilizes herbs and spices that are common to most pantries. I highly recommend making a batch of it and using it as we do—a dash here, a pinch there, for any occasion.

Poudre Fort

This spice mix is aptly named—poudre fort means “strong powder” in French. Used in many medieval recipes, it uses bold seasonings like ginger and mace. I like to use it in recipes that normally just call for black pepper, since this adds a bit of a bite and some extra depth.

“…Into something rich and strange” Part II: A Recipe for Bone Broth

Most people would just throw away the bones of their rotisserie chicken or spare ribs, seeing only trash, but the right eyes will recognize their worth. By first roasting and them simmering them for hours, you’ll get a bone broth that is better than anything you could get at the store, and which can breathe life into your soups, your sauces, your braised meats, and so much more…