I was feeling rather ambitious the other day and with the weather being cold, I decided I to make a pot of chicken stock. I found the recipe many years ago in Gourmet Magazine, March 1991. I made it quite a bit when my children were young, but now only once in a great while.
One of the last times I made the stock, both of our Brittany Spaniels were alive. After I separated the liquid from the solids, I would cut up the celery and carrots and feed them to Rose and Daisy. How they loved to eat those chicken flavored veggies!
I already had on hand a bunch of celery and parsely from another recipe. I purchased a family pack of Bell & Evans split chicken breasts from Whole Foods ($4.19/lb.). The recipe calls for chicken backs, wings, necks and bones, but I prefer breasts as I can use the meat in another meal. I've used the cooked chicken for a pot pie and as a topping on salads. The other ingredients are common pantry items e.g. fresh garlic, onions, carrots and dried herbs.
The prep is fairly easy, but the pot needs to simmer for three hours. If you don't have a simmer setting on your stock, consider purchasing a heat diffuser. Williams-Sonoma has one for $15. It fits over your stovetop burner and evenlly distributes the heat so as avoid hot spots and scorching.
Once the stock is done, I let it cool for a about 30 minutes on the stove top. I pull out the solids and freezer the liquid in containers. The stock keeps for three months in the freezer and yields approximately 10 cups. Also, there's only a teaspoon of salt in 14 cups of water, making homemade less salty than can or boxed broth or stock.
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A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.