KAPA‘A — Since 2018, Bone To Be Wild owner Kristal Muhich has been slinging bone broth out of a little storefront.
But now she’s just using the space to make the broth, and has moved to primarily selling wholesale and online.
It was a combination of factors that caused the Anahola resident to shift gears, Muhich said, including some of the same challenges other Kaua‘i business owners are facing, “primarily a slowing of business and a fear of not knowing if we are going to be able to make it through.”
She said the main reason she opened the brick-and-mortar location daily before COVID-19 was that she was cooking daily in the commercial kitchen. But that has changed.
“We have now gotten our process down to only need to be in there to cook one to two days a week,” Muhich said. “We don’t have a staff to support the retail store and we don’t serve a large variety of items, so we are aiming at just wholesale sales.”
Weekly, Bone To Be Wild makes 35 to 40 gallons of broth, all infused with Hawaiian herbs. They offer beef broth from locally-raised animals and chicken broth that is primary organic chicken feet loaded with collagen.
Muhich started Bone To Be Wild envisioning a business that would supply nutrient-dense foods, support local agriculture and provide a learning opportunity in her own life. She learned about the health benefits of bone broth and how to make it, and then found ingredients from local Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i farmers, ingredients she’s still using. “All of our herbs are from Rising Sun Farm,” said Muhich. “Our chef is Richard Taken. We use 100% Hawai‘i-raised steers as our main ingredient, from Wailua Meat Company. Our chicken comes primarily from Puna Chicks on Big Island.”
Muhich said their process consists of a 48-hour simmering and chilling procedure using Kaua‘i kombucha vinegar to extract all of the nutrients from the bones.
“We then add in fresh, medicinal Hawaiian herbs to increase the health factor even more,” said Muhich.
Muhich finds joy in providing her family and Kaua‘i with healing foods.
“It seems our lives are so busy we’ve steered away from traditional cooking, and what is readily available now is a lot of fast and low-quality food,” said Muhich.
“I want to provide dense nutrition (that people) can consume without compromising their busy lifestyle, all while educating people on the importance of how your food is made and how that affects your health.”
She points to bone broth’s ample amount of protein and highly-absorbable minerals as healthy additions to a daily diet, as well as benefits like combating inflammation and restoring gut linings.
Bone To Be Wild’s website also lists high amounts of calcium, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus from the bones that support a healthy immune system and increased bone strength. Gelatin enhances gut health, while glycine fends off fatigue, Bone To Be Wild’s literature says.
The collagen in the bone broth supports and strengthens joints, boosts skin elasticity and helps diminish fine lines.
Muhich said the best way to consume bone broth is on a empty stomach, sipping it in between meals, to keep blood-sugar levels stable and energy high. It also works as a soup, can be cooked with rice or grains or frozen in ice-cube trays to toss in future smoothies.
“For those who like to fast in the morning but also work out, it’s a great late breakfast to hold you over until lunch,” she said. Find Bone To Be Wild bone broth at Papaya Natural Foods and Hoku Whole Foods in Kapa‘a, Healthy Hut in Kilauea, at the Kaua‘i Juice Company locations and online.