Homemade stock adds an extra burst of flavor to soups, stews, pasta and many other dishes. Unlike the stuff in the can or box, you can control the flavors that go into it, the salt content, and it's free of artificial additives and preservatives.
Stock has to simmer for hours, but actually takes very little effort from you. This method is hassle-free, and costs nothing.
While preparing your meals, instead of tossing vegetable scraps in the trash or compost bin, place clean, well-scrubbed peelings, ends and cores of your veggies in a freezer bag. Freeze between meals.
When your bag is full, place the contents in a crockpot and cover with water. Add herbs of your choice. I like rosemary and thyme. Season lightly with salt if desired. For beef or chicken stock, add a few reserved bones-kept in a separate freezer bag until needed. Cook on low heat 8 hours.
When finished, allow it to cool. Strain out the bits and pieces, reserving the yummy stock.
Freeze in quart or pint-size canning jars, or in ice cube trays. If using ice cube trays, transfer to a freezer bag when well frozen and store in the freezer until needed.