Broth is a liquid in which meat, seafood, cereal grains, or vegetables have been simmered and strained out. Broth is used as a basis for soups, gravies, sauces, and as a flavor base in many other dishes. Additionally, it can be eaten alone or with a garnish. Broth that has been slowly simmered until it is clarified and substantially reduced (at least by 50%) is known as consommé, which has a substantially more intense flavor due to the reduction. Broths can be further concentrated into pastes or powders and sold commercially, the latter being bullion and often sold as bullion cubes. Their shelf life without preservatives is limited. Commercial preparations also often have large amounts of salt and or MSG added. Bullion cubes in particular have more salt than flavor and will alter the final recipe in many cases if substituted for broth. When it is necessary to clarify a broth (i.e. for a cleaner presentation), egg whites may be added during simmering—the egg whites will coagulate, trapping sediment and turbidity into a readily strainable mass.
Broth differs from soup stock, in that stock requires bones and water; whilst broth requires the meat instead of bones. Broth is not cooked as long as soup stock and has a milder taste. Broth also contains less gelée, or gelatin because bones are not used; however it is common for the terms to be used interchangeably.
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- This module incorporates text from the Wikipedia article "Broth", under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License