The thing I think most people don’t realize about any stock is how easy (and inexpensive) it is to make. Sure it can be time consuming because it has to cook down for a long time, but if you’re never home for that amount of time throw it in the crock-pot! You will be amazed by the flavor and quality difference you will achieve once you have it.

The other thing that I, myself, was surprised about was the fact that all it requires is stuff you’ve usually got laying around your kitchen. I have taken it even one step further and learned to apply my “Recipe Schmecipe” approach to the whole thing.

Let me explain…


A typical broth consists of the following: Meat bones (not the case for veg stock), some sort of root veggies (carrots, turnips etc.), celery, onion and/or leeks, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper, and water. That’s it! Well, I’ve noticed that most recipes out there call for almost identical recipes across the board, BUT what I realized is that YOU can change it around! It is YOUR stock after all. SO, this recipe is a loosey goosey one. I’ll tell you what I put in this time (because it’s what I had on hand), but also what you can interchange in there.

And my favorite part?! I HATE the fact that after roasting a chicken or bone-in ANYTHING for that matter… I end up throwing away all those bones; it feels so wasteful. Well, this is the perfect place to put them to use!!! Don’t throw away what may seem like trash! There is so much flavor to be drawn from them still! High-five to using yet another part of the product instead of throwing it out!

You will need:

Left over cooked chicken bones (I had two breast bones and left over frozen wing tips from the last time I made SPICY BALSAMIC GLAZED WINGS WITH ROSEMARY & GARLIC). You can also use a whole roasted chicken carcass (I hate that word btw) if you have one, which is the typical method.

Root vegetables (I had some carrots on hand and used two- unpeeled and coarsely chopped) I love daikon radish in this too but didn’t have any on hand [daikon is used in pho]. People also commonly add turnips as well.


Celery (I used about 4 stalks chopped, leaves included) This has such a unique flavor that I like to try and get it in every stock I make (besides pho), so I don’t have a good recommendation for a replacement. A nice accompaniment might be fresh fennel bulb though!


Onion (I had two large yellow onions- chopped, and about 4 green onions [white, light, and dark green parts]- all chopped) Leeks are a very common stock component as well, and shallots are great too although you will have to use quite a few to get the flavor you’re looking for.


Garlic (I used 4 cloves- smashed) Here is another place where I don’t have a good replacement. I’m sure if you don’t have it on hand you could use a little granulated garlic.


Herbs (I used a bundle of fresh sage and thyme… *the green onion tops from above count down here too) I was missing some VERY traditional ingredients, so if you have ‘em, use ‘em: Parsley, bay leaf, and rosemary. Don’t be afraid to get creative here though! If there is an herb you love that I didn’t mention, try it in here!


Spices (I used 1 Tbs salt and 1 Tbs black pepper corns) You could put a total spin on flavor though with things like, whole fennel seed, coriander pods, star anise etc. *I recommend using a small amount of these though. For example- I only use one-two star anise ‘pods’ when making a giant pot of pho…

Anything additional you want to add (I added a jalapeño- you can adjust heat level by how many seeds you leave in the pepper. We like it pretty spicy so I left half of the seeds. I also added lemongrass, but didn’t have fresh stalks handy so I used one of those refrigerator squeeze tubes of it- about 1 Tbs.) Get crazy here too though! Ginger is lovely, any other peppers you prefer etc… make it your own!



Water (I used enough to cover my ingredients by a few inches)

Combine all of your ingredients in a large stockpot (or slow cooker if using). Cook at a rolling simmer for about 4-6 hours (on high in your slow cooker).

Pour your liquid into a large bowl or another stockpot using a fine mesh strainer to catch the solids. *Be careful not to let the hot liquid burn you!


Let cool to room temperature or refrigerate overnight. Once cool, skim the cooled/solidified fat from the top and use immediately or separate into storage containers and freeze for later! ** I like to squeeze in a bit of lemon in my stock when I use it… But that’s because I like lemon in just about everything.


Freezer tip! Freeze flat in well-sealed freezer zip-seal bags for much more storage ease (You can stack on top of one another and once frozen you can keep like that or store side by side like books!). The stock defrosts faster too! Frozen stock lasts for about two months. (I labeled mine with make date and expiration)

 

BACK TO BASICS: A GUIDE TO CHICKEN STOCK
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Ingredients
  1. Left over cooked chicken bones (I had two breast bones and left over frozen wing tips from the last time I made SPICY BALSAMIC GLAZED WINGS WITH ROSEMARY & GARLIC). You can also use a whole roasted chicken carcass (I hate that word btw) if you have one, which is the typical method.
  2. Root vegetables (I had some carrots on hand and used two- unpeeled and coarsely chopped) I love daikon radish in this too but didn’t have any on hand [daikon is used in pho]. People also commonly add turnips as well.
  3. Celery (I used about 4 stalks chopped, leaves included) This has such a unique flavor that I like to try and get it in every stock I make (besides pho), so I don’t have a good recommendation for a replacement. A nice accompaniment might be fresh fennel bulb though!
  4. Onion (I had two large yellow onions- chopped, and about 4 green onions [white, light, and dark green parts]- all chopped) Leeks are a very common stock component as well, and shallots are great too although you will have to use quite a few to get the flavor you’re looking for.
  5. Garlic (I used 4 cloves- smashed) Here is another place where I don’t have a good replacement. I’m sure if you don’t have it on hand you could use a little granulated garlic.
  6. Herbs (I used a bundle of fresh sage and thyme… *the green onion tops from above count down here too) I was missing some VERY traditional ingredients, so if you have ‘em, use ‘em: Parsley, bay leaf, and rosemary. Don’t be afraid to get creative here though! If there is an herb you love that I didn’t mention, try it in here!
  7. Spices (I used 1 Tbs salt and 1 Tbs black pepper corns) You could put a total spin on flavor though with things like, whole fennel seed, coriander pods, star anise etc. *I recommend using a small amount of these though. For example- I only use one-two star anise ‘pods’ when making a giant pot of pho…
  8. Anything additional you want to add (I added a jalapeño- you can adjust heat level by how many seeds you leave in the pepper. We like it pretty spicy so I left half of the seeds. I also added lemongrass, but didn’t have fresh stalks handy so I used one of those refrigerator squeeze tubes of it- about 1 Tbs.) Get crazy here too though! Ginger is lovely, any other peppers you prefer etc… make it your own!
  9. Water (I used enough to cover my ingredients by a few inches)
Instructions
  1. Combine all of your ingredients in a large stockpot (or slow cooker if using). Cook at a rolling simmer for about 4-6 hours (on high in your slow cooker).
  2. Pour your liquid into a large bowl or another stockpot using a fine mesh strainer to catch the solids. *Be careful not to let the hot liquid burn you!
  3. Let cool to room temperature or refrigerate overnight. Once cool, skim the cooled/solidified fat from the top and use immediately or separate into storage containers and freeze for later! Frozen stock lasts for about two months.
Notes
  1. Freezer tip! Freeze flat in well-sealed freezer zip-seal bags for much more storage ease (You can stack on top of one another and once frozen you can keep that way or store side by side like books!). The stock defrosts faster too! Frozen stock lasts for about two months. (I labeled mine with make date and expiration)
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