top of page


Stock can be simply defined as a liquid which has been simmered for a long time in order to extract the flavour from ingredients used.

In almost all the cases, water is the liquid medium used in which flavour is extracted and the same is passed and used accordingly.

Stock is usually made from the bones and vegetables. The type of bones used for the stock would depend upon the final usage of the stock and same way, the name is suggested.

Bones are porous and somewhere hard in nature and hence, prolonged amount of cooking at lower temperature is the best method of cooking stock. Vegetables are again soft in nature so prolonged cooking would make the vegetables to go mushy and bitter as well, so it is never advised to simmer vegetables for longer than 45 minutes.

When simmered the impurities from the stock rises to the surface of the liquid and forms a layer of scum floating on top, so it is advised to keep removing the scum from time to time in intervals during the time required to make a particular stock or else stock would get cloudy and termed as cloudy stock.

This is the most important part of the stock as this will give a definite characteristic to the stock.

A chicken stock simmered with Indian spices would be used only in Indian cooking, chicken stock with Thai flavourings would be used only in Thai dishes. Similarly, Western stock would use herbs and other vegetables depending upon the type of stock. The bunch of herbs used to flavour western stock is termed as ‘bouquet garni’. Certain spices such as bay leaf, peppercorn and dry thyme are used to spice up the stock and are known as sachet d’epices, Literally means, “bags of spices”. A stock should be flavoured enough to allow it for easy identification but the flavour should not be over powering to mask the real flavour of the stock.

Important terms:

Broth: known as bouillon in French, it is a result of poaching meat or vegetables in a liquid medium.

Court bouillon: water boiled with seasoning and flavourings with an acidic medium, such as wine or lemon juice, is called court bouillon.

Neutral stock: it is usually referred to a veal stock which is white in colour and has a neutral flavour.

Fumet: fish stock is called fumet in French. Many people confuse it with glaze, which means a reduced fish stock.

Remouillage: it is also known as rewetting of the second stock. When the stock is made and strained off, more water is added to the remaining bones and vegetables and the stock is simmered for around an hour.

Classification/Type of the stock:

The stock is basically classified according to their colours and type of main ingredient used to flavour the stock.

White stock:

Both white and brown stocks are made from the bones and vegetables, however, the process and timings to be followed for each is a slightly different.

Vegetables such as leeks, onion, celery, and turnips are used to flavour the stock as red coloured vegetables like carrot, etc. will change the colour of the stock. No tomato product is used for white stock.

Brown stock:

In case of brown stocks, the bones and vegetables are roasted or caramelised. Tomato paste is used and it is also sautéed to get a deep brown colour. The shin bones of beef have the best flavours and hence, the most preferred for brown beef stocks.

Fish Stock:

Usually fish stock is made by using fish trimming and fish bones, flesh is avoided as it has short and delicate fibre which can make the stock go cloudy while cooking, sometime lime is also added to help the flesh to quickly co-gulate and seal so it doesn’t fall off. Even the cooking time for fish stock is never simmered more than 20 minutes which again avoids the cloudiness of the stock.

Stocks and their uses:

Stock are the base for any western cooking. Most commonly, it is used to make soup and sauces; but the usage is not just limited to this. White stock is used in preparations of white sauces and clear soup, while brown stocks are used in brown sauces, red meat stews, and braised dishes. Stock can also be used to prepare certain rice dishes such as paella and biryanis.

Standard Mire poix: 50% onion/leek*+25% carrot/turnip*+25% celery/celery root* (starred for white stock)

Sachet de’epices: 1 sprig thyme+1 bay leaf+ 3-4 parsley stems+5 gm pepper corns/optional+1 garlic clove (for 4 liters of water)

Bouquet Garni: 1 sprig thyme+ 1 bayleaf+1/6 “ of celery stick+1/6 “ of leeks (for 4 liters of water)

Write Recipes:

1. Fish stock

2. White stock with bones

3. Brown beef stock

4. Vegetable stock

Time Required to make Different Stock:

Emergency stock: boil water and add stock cube or stock powder and dilute, ready.

Fish Stock: 20 Mnts

Vegetable Stock: 45 Mnts

Chicken Stock: 4 Hours

Mutton/Lamb/Pork stock: 4-6 Hours

Veal/Beef Stock: 6-8 Hours (white or brown)

Storage of stock:

Stock can be chilled in cold water bath and stored. Stocks are generally used the same day in which they are prepared. Since some stocks might take longer time to get ready and these stocks are chilled and frozen and then it can be freeze stored at -18/-24 C for almost a month.

Usage of Stocks:

Stocks are used generally in making of soups and thickened to form sauces. Some stocks are reduced and used as a glaze to give shiny appearance on top of certain food items. Some cold foods are also smeared with glaze. Aspic jelly is also made by reduction of stock and is transparent/amber colour in nature and different cut outs are made with the help of cutters to garnish certain foods like “chaud froid” and smoked fish which is being served cold.

Care and precautions:

Golden rule is to simmer not to boil. Always simmer the stock for extraction of better flavour. No green leaf (leaf from celery stick) should be added to avoid discolouration of stock. Use of proper timings is always important. Blanching of bones in hot water is very important, before you make white stock of bones. Always roast the bones to a even brown colour and not to burn them. Do not stir while simmering, as few vegetables get mushy and while stirring they get mushy and make the stock cloudy. Add sachet d’ epice at later stages so that spices don’t over power the flavour and aroma of main ingredient used.

Important Related Terms:

Consommé, Espagnole, Estouffade, Fond de cuisine, Veloute, Shorba, Shin Bones, Ragout, Broth, Court bouillons.



  • fond de blancboeuf (beef) 6-8 Hrs

  • fond de blancveau (veel) 6 Hrs

  • fond de mouton/d' agneau (mutton/lamb) 4 Hrs

  • fond de vollaile (poultry) 3Hrs

  • fond de blancpoisson (fish) 25 min

FOND DE BRUN "estouffade"

  • Fond de brunboeuf

  • fond de brunveau

  • fond de brunmutton/ agneau

  • fond de brunvollaile









500gm lean shin of beef

1.5ltr of cold water

1tsp of salt

1 medium sized carrot

1 medium sized onion

1 stick of celery

Bouquet garni

¼ tsp black peppercorn



5kg fish bones

100gm butter

500gm mirepoix

1 litre white wine

4 litre water

1 sachet d’epices


1. Clean and wash the fish bones to remove any dirt.

2. Cut the bones into smaller pieces and sauté with mirepoix

3. Add white wine and cook for 2 minutes

4. Add cold water and sachet of spices and let the stock simmer for 20 minutes.

5. Remove from fire and strain. Discard the mirepoix and bone and cool immediately for further usage



4KG Chicken bones

06 litres water

1 Medium sized onion

1 medium sized carrot

1 bay leaf

1/8 tsp thyme

1/8 tsp peppercorn

3-4 parsley stem

1 clove

Cut the bones into 3-4-inch pieces and rinse in cold water


1. Blanch the bones, place them in a stock pot cover with cold water and bring it to boil.

2. During the boiling reduce the heat to simmer and skim off the scum carefully

3. Add sachet d’epices in the stock pot and add onion, carrot, celery, and simmer for length of time (chicken stock= 3-4 hrs/ beef or veal= 6-8 hrs)

4. Remove from fire once done and then strain it and cool it for further use.



Recent Posts




bottom of page