Good Ol' Fashioned Chicken Stock
I'm not going to lie to you good people. I personally almost always use a low-sodium/natural chicken stock from a carton, rather than making my own. When I'm looking for an even more "familiar" flavor, I'll go with some powdered form of chicken base. It's quick, salty and common in so many dishes and restaurants that it's almost become the NEW "homemade" flavor, sad to say ... even though I love it.
I still feel it's important to know what it is and where it comes from. It's the backbone of any good soup or sauce. It gives body and a bit of foundation to anything in which it has been added. Without using a chicken stock (or veggie or beef stock), you're just adding "water", which ... is little more than a diluting of flavor. A nice chicken stock gives a little more viscosity, a touch of sweetness, a dash of meatiness and generally brings it all together.
Chicken stocks have been around since the dawn of the chicken. I'm going to present the "home" version of the same chicken stock I was taught in cooking school, and the very same one used in the great restaurants of the world.
Note: I often roast the bones before making the stock, for a richer and more charismatic flavor. It depends on what I'm doing, but it's not uncommon for me to brown the bones in the oven, before making a stock. I also often buy whole roasted birds from the local deli and use the carcass for stock, after picking the bones clean for things like soups and chicken salad.
Final Final Note: Disregard the individual ingredient lines' nutrition on this recipe. I faked the numbers. Because it's all strained out, I don't know how to calculate it. So, the end result is more in tune with what I generally see listed as "chicken stock". You can trust the final numbers, but ... not the math.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time3 hrs
Servings: 8 Servings
- 4 lbs meaty chicken bones or parts. wings drumsticks, backs and necks are excellent
- 2 1/2 qts cold water
- 1 cp onion diced
- 1/2 cp carrot diced
- 1/2 cp celery diced
- 5 each whole black peppercorns
- 4 each parsley stems
- 1 each bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
Add the chicken to the cold water in a stock pot and place on the stove, over medium heat. The water should cover the chicken by an inch or two. Add more water, if necessary.
Watch the stock pot, as it slowly rises to a simmer. As it rises in temperature, grayish foam and funk may rise to the surface. Skim this off and discard.
Do not let the stock come to a boil. Once it begins to slowly simmer, turn the heat down to maintain a very slow, mellow, gurgling simmer.
Continue skimming off any fat or funk that may accumulate at the top of the pot.
After 1 ½ hours, add the rest of the ingredients.
Simmer and skim for a further hour.
Remove the bones from the broth and set aside. If there is any meat in the bones, you can pick it for soups, salads, pasta, etc. Discard the bones.
Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve, into a metal container. If there are any remaining vegetable or chicken particles, you may also discard these.
To cool, place the metal container in a sink or other large container filled with ice water. Stir the stock, occasionally, to allow it to chill more rapidly.
Store, covered, in the fridge for roughly 4 or 5 days, or freeze.
Serving: 8g | Calories: 15.68kcal | Carbohydrates: 1.51g | Protein: 2.24g | Fat: 0.29g