Simple recipe for making broth with a pata negra ham bone

Your pata negra ham may have nothing left to give but you can still do things with it, like making a delicious consommé or a flavorful sauce for a meat dish. The bone marrow and the bits of meat you can’t cut off the bone are tasty and nutritious (vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids and more). Here is how to get it all with very little work and money.

Homemade broth

Homemade broth with pata negra ham bone

Ingredients (for 1 liter of broth):

  • 500 g of Iberico ham bones
  • 2 liters water
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 leek or 1 small onion
  • 1 potato
  • 250 g of squash
  • 1 celery stalk
  • Optional: a little parsley, 2 bay leaves, a piece of turnip, half a cabbage, one pig’s foot and 500 grams of beef, lamb or chicken.
  • DO NOT ADD SALT. The bone contains some salt and it is best to wait until the broth is done before salting to taste.


The ham has several bones and it is best to locate the joints and cut the ligaments with a kitchen knife (photo 1). The biggest pieces can be cut with a saw or a cleaver.

Remove the skin from the pieces and leave a small amount of rancid fat (photo 2).

Cut up the vegetables (photo 3), place everything in a pot with cold water and cook over high heat until it comes to a boil. Then simmer over low heat for 2 to 4 hours (photo 4). The longer you leave it, the stronger it will be. Skim off any scum that forms (photo 5) every 60 minutes to reduce calories.

Finally, strain the broth (photo 6) and leave it to cool a few hours.

When it is at room temperature, put it in the refrigerator. After about 2-3 hours remove it and skim off the fat layer that will have formed on the surface (photo 7) to give a smoother broth that is easier to digest.

Strain it again with a strainer, or with a thin cloth (photo 8) if you like it very clear.

Cutting the ligaments
1. Cut the ligaments to separate the ham bones.
Beef bone and ribs, ham bones and chicken carcass
2. From left to right: beef bone and ribs, ham bones and chicken carcass.
Vegetables for the broth
3. Cut vegetables.
All the ingredients in the pot
4. All the ingredients in the pot.
Broth scum
5. Skim off the scum every hour.
Straining the broth through a strainer
6. Strain the broth and let it cool to make it easier to remove the fat.
Fat that has risen to the broth's surface
7. Remove the fat that has risen to the surface.
Straining the broth through a thin cloth
8. Strain the broth with a thin cloth to make a very clear soup.


If you want a broth with more body, blend it with a beater for 2 minutes.

If you want less fat, add a beaten egg white to the broth about 15 minutes before removing it from the heat.

Add a handful of chickpeas, pasta or rice together with the bones and vegetables to get a smoother texture.


Brown stock (for meat stew and sauces)

Brown stock


The same as for consommé, plus:

  • 1 tomato
  • 200 ml red wine


Prepare exactly the same as the consommé but cook the ingredients (except the wine) in the oven before boiling. This will give a darker color and a slightly roasted flavor.

Place the cut bones in the oven at 180ºC and add the vegetables after 30 minutes. Remove the pan after another 15 minutes and place everything in a pot with cold water and wine.


Simple recipe for making broth with a pata negra ham bone
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