Whats the difference between broth and stocks? They’re are so similar, and the techniques are exactly alike – which is why understandibly, there is some uncertainty around them.
Let me break it down.
What’s the difference?
The major difference between stocks and broths is that broths are to be served as is, and stocks are used in other dishes.
Poultry and meat broths have a more prominant flavor than stocks because they are based on meat, instead of bones.
However, broths don’t have as much body as stocks, because they don’t have the gelatin from bones. When it comes to fish and vegetable broths, since the ingredients are pretty much the same, as fish and vegetable stocks, so you could pretty much use the terms interchangeably.
How they’re made – in a nutsell
Broths – combining all ingredients with a cool liquid, and simmer over gentle heat.
White stocks – combining all ingredients with a cool liquid, and simmer over gentle heat.
Brown stocks – Roasting or sauteing the bones and vegetables (usually onion, carrot, celery called mirepoix) in enough fat to create a deep dark and rich color and then simmer.
Fumets – (Also called essences) sweat the main ingredient – for example, fish bones or shrimp shells; before simmering and add a bit of dry white wine.
When to use the two?
Could you use your packaged “broth” for cooking your rice, etc instead of stock? Of course! They can be used interchangeably.
However, if you are making your own stock or broth, it is better to be intentional for its use. If you want a really flavorful soup, you would make a broth that would include the meat and the bones and gently simmer until they are completely tender.
This soup (without the matzah balls) is considered a broth.