I love to roast a whole chicken and I just realized I have never shared my favorite recipe with you. I will do that soon! The recipe I use is simple and delicious, making it perfect for a busy weeknight meal or a special Sunday dinner. I also love that once we are done with the juicy chicken, I save the leftover frame of bones and skin for making stock. You could also use the rotisserie chicken from Costco. We love those at our house. Just when you have taken all the meat off it that you want use what is left to make a wonderful chicken stock.
Homemade chicken stock is the perfect base for your soups. It is full of flavor, has a rich body (thanks to the gelatin the chicken bones release during the long cook time) and is very nutritious. So much better than the super salt and preservative laden you find on store shelves. Stock freezes very well, so you can always have it on hand when needed. The difference between stock and broth is that in stock bones are used instead of just the meat in broth. The bones are what makes the difference in both taste and health. In a stock, this calcium and other minerals from the bones are transferred directly to the water, and therefore into you! The best part is that it’s a more easily assimilated form of all the minerals than many other sources, including your supplements. There was science behind the century old practice of feeding chicken stock to sick or hurt people! Our Grandmas were smart! If you Google health benefits of chicken stock you will learn all about the amazing health benefits of using the bones. Just to name a few: boosts immune system, aids digestion, provides easily digestible minerals including calcium, improves symptoms of the common cold, joint pain, irritable bowl syndrome (something I have been dealing with my 10 year old) and the list goes on and on. So, are you convinced that making stock is a good thing? Yes?! Well then, lets get started! you will be surprised at how easy it is!
How To: Make Chicken Stock
submitted by Melanie~www.thesisterscafe.com
Leftover bones and skin from a cooked or raw chicken
onion, peeled and quartered
carrots, washed and cut in half
celery, wash and cut in half—be sure to include the leaves they are full of flavor!
garlic–remove paper from a clove or two
a shake of peppercorns
salt (depending on your preferences)
Optional: parsley and herbs if you have (dill, thyme, sage are great–but I usually don’t include
1 Put the leftover bones and skin from a chicken into a large stock pot and cover with cold water. Add veggies like celery, onion, carrots, garlic, parsley and any herbs you want. Add salt and peppercorns , about a teaspoon of salt, if desired.
2 Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat to bring the stock to barely a simmer. Simmer uncovered at least 4 hours, occasionally skimming off the foam that comes to the surface.
3 Strain the stock using a fine metal sieve or colander. If you want it even more clear you can use a cheese cloth and strain it a second time.
4 If making stock for future use in soup you may want to reduce the stock by simmering a few hours longer to make it more concentrated. I rarely ever do this unless I accidentally used too much water to begin with.
*If you find that your stock gels upon cooking than pat yourself on the back!! That is some super good stock you have there!