Vegetable Stock

Upon first glance, this stock seems quick and easy.  But beware…the prep work takes an exorbitant amount of time if you do everything by hand.  I recommend you use a food processor for all your chopping lest you spend an entire day chopping vegetables.  You may lose a tiny bit of flavor as the juices leech out, but you’ll save yourself from a serious case of carpel tunnel syndrome.  There are some things worth doing by hand…with love…this is not one of them.

This stock is a great base for any vegetarian sauce or soup and works well in the mushroom parfait recipe.  This recipe, adapted from Heston Blumenthal at Home makes 2kg so I recommend freezing 250 – 500 ml portions (1 – 2 cups) in ziploc freezer bags for later use.

Ingredients – Makes 2kg

  • 50g butter
  • 350g cleaned and finely sliced leeks (about 7 white and light green part only)
  • 225g peeled and finely sliced carrots
  • 200g peeled and finely sliced onions
  • 200g finely sliced button mushrooms
  • 100g finely sliced fennel
  • 100g finely sliced celery
  • 3 sprigs of thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 30g flat leaf parsley


  • Melt the butter in a pressure cooker over medium heat.  Add all the vegetables and sweat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the thyme, bay leaves, and 2kg cold tap water.
  • Lock the lid on the pressure cooker, turn the heat to high and bring to full pressure (2 bar).
  • Reduce the heat to low and cook for 20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and allow to cool completely and depressurize.  Remove the lid (away from yourself to avoid the steam).
  • Place the pressure cooker (without lid) over medium heat for 5 minutes, then turn off the heat, add the parsley and allow to cool for 20 minutes.
  • Strain the stock through a sieve lined with two layers of cheesecloth.  Cool over an ice bath and refrigerate or freeze until needed.


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