I was curious what people’s thoughts were on this stuff. I never tried it, but a couple days ago I noticed some on the shelf. And figured what the hell, I’ll give some of the beef a try.
I love Beef and Barley together, particularly I like to make Barley in my rice cooker in half water and half beef broth. But since I normally just use boxed broth, I’m not living at gourmet levels to begin with, and I doubt it can be too bad even at worst case.
But it will take two hours to finish, so now I am wondering If I should have diluted/stirred it into the water rather than just dropping a plop on top of the water and turning it on.
I love the stuff. It’s great when you need to punch up various flavors and don’t have enough homemade stuff on hand. I use it primarily in soups, sauces, gravies and stews, also if I want instant broth and want to control the strength of the broth.
I would have stirred the BTB into the water first, but my guess is it will be ok even if you didn’t. You may find a congealed smear of it somewhere in your barley, but a few quick stirs will disburse the product more consistently through the cooked grain. You know for next time.
I love the stuff. America’s Test Kitchen recommends it, too. I make a fair amount of soup and I usually add a spoonful of Roasted Beef AND a spoonful of Chicken. The old-timey bouillon cubes were mostly salt. BTB has a lot of flavor.
I use the stuff and have it around. I find it somewhat better than bouillon, but it still tastes like bouillon. It still tastes salty and glutamate-y as hell (which is often why I want bouillon and bouillon-type products around), but I don’t quite share the exuberance for it everyone else has.
Depends on your definition of “far less.” 1 tsp of Better than Bouillon chicken base has 700 mg of salt. My 1 tsp of Knorr chicken bouillon powder has 820 mg of salt. Both are the amount used to make one cup according to the instructions on the pack. That’s not really “far less salt” to me. It’s still damned salty stuff, but there is a reduced sodium version (as there is of the chicken bouillon.)
I can make an ambrosial (if I do say so myself) stock or broth from scratch, and often do, using only original, unadulterated ingredients. By the time I roast the bones, add the water, the “solids” (carrots, onions, garlic, celery, parsley), herbs, salt and pepper, simmer till reduced, then strain, it takes most of a day. I usually make soup from this base.
Sometimes ya just want a cup of broth for a recipe in a hurry, y’know? BTB is wonderful for this.
I agree, the beef is great. The chicken, I don’t care for. There’s lots of varieties including vegetable and I just saw they have clam. There’s a low sodium version of the beef (and probably other flavors) that I use for making gravy as I mentioned in the meat loaf thread. The regular one if fine is stocks or mixing into meats, especially hamburger. Be sure to cut back or eliminate the salt as you’ll never realize how salty it us until it’s dissolved.
If you come across a blob in your bowl or pot, take it out and don’t just mix it in. I really needs a good while in hot liquid to mellow out the flavor. If you don’t you’ll just get a big hit of salt. Also, be sure to stir well if you’re just plopping into whatever you’re making as it will drop the bottom and possibly burn. Really, really nasty when it burns!
I’ve forgotten about it since I found Better than Bouillon, but you might try mixing in a little Kitchen Bouquet. It’s mainly know for helping browning of meats, but I used to use it soups and stews to give them a little flavor boost. Hmmm…should buy a bottle, next market trip.