Twin Cities entrepreneurs launch a broth — yes, broth — startup
Gourmets in London, on the east and west coasts and in food-forward, hipster-dense cities like Austin, Tex. and Portland, Ore. have been hot on the trend for the past year or so — hot broth, sipped by the steaming cupful, as a healthy alternative to a caffeinated drink.
Now people in the Twin Cities can join them. A locally-sourced version of the nutrient-rich beverage debuts Dec.19th at the Northeast Farmer's Market in Minneapolis, which is held at Chowgirls Solar Arts Center from 10am-2pm.
“We’re starting with chicken broth, salted or unsalted," said Molly Clark, 30, who founded Taking Stock with her friend and former food industry colleague Maddy Kaudy, 31. They are producing the bone broth in volume at a commercial kitchen in St. Paul.
The pair spent the past year cooking up their business plan for Taking Stock, working with mentors from SCORE and WomenVenture. They went on the hunt for local ingredients to meet their exacting standards, choosing free range chicken raised on the family-run Kadejan Farms in Glenwood, artisan vinegar produced Long Prairie and shallots grown on an organic farm in Wisconsin to flavor their broth.
Photo courtesy of Taking Stock.
“We use backs, thighs and drumsticks, the most flavorful parts of the chicken, and start by soaking the bones in a vinegar solution. We simmer it for 12 hours, then skim it,” Clark explained. “The finished broth has body, but when you pour it in a cup, you can see the bottom.”
Promoters of the hot product in New York City, home of the nation’s first dedicated broth stand, stress the liquid’s appeal to low-carb and Paleo diet fans; it’s become popular with models, who say the collagen and gelatin released from bone marrow help to strengthen, hair, nails and skin. In Los Angeles, bone broth is on the training table for the Lakers.
Clark and Kaudy make no claims about their product, but other broth makers have noted that boiling bones releases vitamins and minerals, releasing meaty juices that are a source of easily digestible, fat soluble vitamins.
Minnesota customers will pay $4 for a cup of the hot Taking Stock broth, which has 40 calories and 10 grams of protein, according to its nutrition label. Taking Stock will also sell frozen pints for $8 for customers to use as a base for homemade pho or cold-curing chicken soup.
Clark and Kaudy hope to sell their product at other markets this winter.