A simple vegetable broth might not seem like a recipe worth sharing but, when you know what it can do for your wellbeing, hopefully you'll come around to our way of thinking. Shel Pink, in her book Slow Beauty, highlights potassium as being the wonder element in a homemade broth that makes it so good for our general wellbeing. Derived from the combination of vegetables, potassium is a powerful reliever of feelings of anxiety or stress (most of us), plus it helps regulate levels of cortisol and adrenaline in the body, both of which have a significant effect on all our body's systems.
We've taken, with thanks, Shel's recipe and added in an optional ingredient to boost your connection to your environment and take the idea of green beauty to a whole new level. Nettles grow throughout early spring and summer all over the world, and are microbiologically unique to each locale. Add in a handful of young, local nettle leaves foraged from a footpath near you. Don't be scared, harvesting and preparing them isn't as hard as you think, and they're high in calcium, vitamins A and C, iron, magnesium, thiamin, and, of course, potassium.
Adding this broth-making ritual into your week, along with a natural, minimalist skincare routine is a great step towards the kind of slow living that impacts our inner and outer beauty.
Makes just under 2 litres
Carefully select (organic if able):
1 large onion
1 large parsnip
3 large carrots
4 celery ribs
1 leek, white and pale green part
A large handful of young nettle leaves
3 large white mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, crushed
5 sprigs of fresh thyme
Leaves from 1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley
1 bay leaf
1tsp whole peppercorns
1tsp smoked paprika
1tsp Cornish sea salt (because Cornwall rocks)
Ready to go?
Put some pleasing music on. Roughly chop all the vegetables. Put them in a large pot and fill with just enough water to cover them. Add the nettles, garlic, herbs, spices and sea salt. Cover and bring to just under a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally and checking the liquid level. Remove from the heat and allow it to cool. Remove and compost the vegetables, and pour the rest of the stock through a strainer, discarding any remaining solids. Keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days, or freeze it in batches. Drink throughout the day, or add to other dishes during cooking, as stock.