Monday, December 27, 2010

Homemade Chicken Stock

I like to have lots of stock on hand for soups, stews and sauces, it's nice to cook rice in too.
After we have a roast chicken, I pick off most of the rest of the meat,leaving the smallest bits, and save the bones in the refrigerator. In the morning, I put the bones into a 4-6 quart pot and fill it almost to the top with water. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat then reduce to low to maintain simmer.
Add an unpeeled onion ( the skin adds to the color), a couple stalks of celery with the leafy part, 4-6 peppercorns, 1 teaspoon salt,a few sprigs of parsley, and a carrot. Put the lid on and simmer 2 hours.
This is what it should look like after a couple hours.
Two hours is just an estimate, if you are pressed for time an hour will do but 3 is even better.
Pour through a sieve or colander to remove all the bones and vegetables.
After it is chilled, the fat will rise to the top and can be skimmed off easily. Use with in 3-5 days or freeze for another time. I'd like to have several quarts in the freezer but we use it almost as fast as I make it. It can also be pressure canned to save space in the freezer, the Blue Book says - 1 inch head space, 25 minutes, 10 pounds pressure.
So next time you roast a chicken (or turkey, or beef roast) don't waste those leftovers, make the best stock you'll ever have in only a few minutes prep time.

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