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May 3, 2008 06:16 PM

Making veggie stock: Sweat veggies 1st or no?

Hi, there seems to be a lot of endless variances to veggie stock, but one key thing I wonder if people do or not is sweating the vegetables before adding it for your veggie stock. I see some people putting it in there raw and some sweating it before putting it in? Any personal preferences? I'd like to here them. It seems like for sauces and jus, you always sweat the vegetables, but for actual vegetable stock not so much...

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  1. Here is my experience you asked to hear: mine go in raw, no sweating involved. I'm curious though what the advantage is to sweating and the different stock that results. TIA

    1. I sweat the aromatics--onion and garlic, and the moirpoix. Anything else just toss in.

      7 Replies
        1. re: enbell

          The onion until just translucent. Garlic can be added at any time to the stock - its flavor is imparted immediately.

          1. re: enbell

            I made the Julia Child onion soup and sweated red onions for 40 minutes, and added a teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon or more or sugar to brown and carmelize the onions. I added 3 tablespoons of flour and stirred the onions for 3 minutes and removed the mixture from the heat. I added the mixture to the beef broth, with 1/2 cup white wine and continued cooking 40 minutes.

            1. re: enbell

              Onions: until either translucent or until caramelized. Translucent brings out some of the sugars and a slightly fuller flavor than raw. Caramelization brings out much more sugar, adds color to the stock, and depth to the flavor. Garlic (if used): just a couple of minutes.

              1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                Re: Garlic, I would agree, only cook for a couple of minutes. If you overcook garlic and it burns, it will make your stock bitter.

                1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                  Sam and miss Class...Brilliant! I picked up quite a hefty onion at the farmer's market and had it "sweatin' to the oldies," and let it caramelize with salt and a bit of sugar. I threw in some garlic, then oyster and button mushrooms, water, and now I've got a great broth simmering on the stove. I'm very excited :) Thank you again.

            2. For veggie stock, I do sweat. It makes the taste more robust and develops the flavors more.

              1. I don't see the need to precook the veggies, and never do. It's all done in less than an hour. Fresh, bright flavors.

                1. I think it depends on what type of flavour you want. Sweating or roasting veggies will give a more developed flavour but you might not want that. Simply throwing everything in raw will give a more versatile/generic stock, which is maybe what you need.