This rich, full-bodied stock can be used in any soup recipe to enrich the flavor. Additional vegetables such as leeks or mushrooms can be added, but stay away from anything too strong, such as cabbage, beets, or broccoli. For an even richer stock, roast the vegetables before adding them to the stockpot.
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large yellow onion, left unpeeled, quartered
1 large carrot, coarsely chopped
1 celery stalk (including leaves), coarsely chopped
2 quarts water
3 large all-purpose potatoes
3 garlic cloves, left unpeeled, crushed
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon salt
1. Heat the oil in a stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and celery, cover and cook, stirring a few times, until softened, about 5 minutes. Remove the lid and stir in the water.
2. Thoroughly scrub the potatoes and peel them thickly. Add the potato peels to the stock; reserve the potatoes for another use. Add the garlic parsley, bay leaves, peppercorns, and salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
3. Strain the stock through a sieve into a large bowl or pot, pressing against the solids with the back of a spoon. The stock can be used now, cooled and refrigerated for up to 3 or 4 days, or portioned and frozen for up to a month.
Makes about 6 cups.