As promised, today I will share how to make your own chicken stock. (To read about the benefits of making your own stock, click here).
I recently made my own turkey stock, and I will explain how I made mine. Instead of the stove, I used the crock pot. After cooking my turkey, I saved the bones and other turkey parts and put them in the crock pot, along with some onions, celery, carrots, and some herbs. I put in enough water to cover the bones. I also added 1-2 tbsp of cider vinegar and then cooked on low overnight. Adding the vinegar helps to leach the minerals from the bones. I basically used whatever leftover vegetables I had. I read somewhere that you can also freeze your carrot tops, celery ends, etc., and then add those to your crock pot whenever you are ready to make your stock.
After cooking, I strained and poured in my containers, because it was a free range turkey. You could store overnight in the fridge and then take the top layer of fat off if you like and then pour in your containers. I found some freezer containers that hold about 2 cups.
If you’re looking for a recipe, here is one recommended by Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions. I found her recipe featured here, and it is also in her book, as well as more recipes for beef stock, fish stock, etc.
1 whole free-range chicken or 2 to 3 pounds of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones and wings*
gizzards from one chicken (optional)
2-4 chicken feet (optional)
4 quarts cold filtered water
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
1 bunch parsley
*Note: Farm-raised, free-range chickens give the best results. Many battery-raised chickens will not produce stock that gels.
If you are using a whole chicken, cut off the wings and remove the neck, fat glands and the gizzards from the cavity. Cut chicken parts into several pieces. (If you are using a whole chicken, remove the neck and wings and cut them into several pieces.) Place chicken or chicken pieces in a large stainless steel pot with water, vinegar and all vegetables except parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and remove scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 to 8 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer and more flavorful it will be. About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.
Remove whole chicken or pieces with a slotted spoon. If you are using a whole chicken, let cool and remove chicken meat from the carcass. Reserve for other uses, such as chicken salads, enchiladas, sandwiches or curries. Strain the stock into a large bowl and reserve in your refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off this fat and reserve the stock in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer.
How do you usually make your chicken stock?