Chicken Broth

4 Mar

With the abundance of rotisserie chicken available, i.e. Costco (the best and cheapest), Publix (anemic) and Whole Foods (expensive), there is always a chicken carcass in my freezer. I can’t leave Costco without a chicken! The meat goes along way, including a quick and easy dinner, protein for lunch time salads as well as a tasty leg for a snack.

After the bones are pick fairly clean from the carcass, since I have broth in the frig and the freezer, I freeze the carcass until I get two or three but you can use just one carcass, it just will not be a rich a broth. When I get low on broth and have a spare moment, it’s broth making time.

To start the both, I use my biggest stock pot, if I’m going to take the time to make the broth I might as well make a lot of it. Go big or go home! Into the pot goes the carcass (frozen works here), three stalks of celery, roughly chopped, two yellow onions, chopped and 2 or three carrots chopped. To that, I fill the pot with water, add a bay leaf and some salt (often I omit the salt going for a sodium free broth) and a small handful of peppercorns. If you don’t have pepper corns a few grinds of pepper will do or a pinch of regular pepper.. It is on to the burn bringing it to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, I turn it down to a simmer, just barely boiling, and let it cook for 2 – 3 hours.

After the broth has cooked for the appropriate amount of time, I let it sit off the burner to cool so I can handle it. Once the broth is cool, I take a large bowl and a set a strainer inside it to strain the broth. If I feel ambitious, I take the bones and pick off all the meat that I can and reserve for future use, i.e. chicken soup, chicken pot pies, or chicken salad. The broth is then divided into containers, one for the refrigerator, one or two for the freezer so I always have broth when needed.

 

Chicken Broth

     

1 or 2 or 3

Chicken carcass

(Costco, Pubix, or your own leftover roasted chicken)

2 or 3

Yellow Onions

Roughly chopped

3

Celery Stalks

I used leaves and all roughly chopped

3 or 4

Carrots

Peeled and roughly chopped

1

Bay leaf

 

1 tbs

Salt

This can be omitted but the broth will be bland

 

Water

Enough to fill the pot, some will evaporate

 

Add everything to a large stock pot and bring to a boil. Once at a boil turn the burner down to a simmer for 2 – 3 hours. Strain once the broth is cool enough to handle and separate the meat from the bones reserving the meat for another use. Separate into containers or use immediately. Can be frozen.

 

Once the broth is made it can be used to make a myriad of things, my favorite is soup. Here are some simple soup ideas.

  1. In a large pot melt 1 tbs of butter, chopped onion, chopped celery, diced carrot, bay leaf, salt and pepper bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer then add chicken left over from stock making. Let simmer for 20 minutes, then add ½ cup rice or some noodles, or orzo or anything that excites you. Cook for another 10 minutes, taste adding salt and pepper as needed.    
  2. Using the above, omit noodles, use rice or orzo and add I bag of spinach or kale, or mixed greens. Fresh tomatoes, cut in quarters, or a can of tomatoes maybe added if you like. If you want to Tuscan add a can of white beans, navy, cannellini or red beans.
  3. Use broth instead of water to make rice. When the rice is done add 2 tbls butter cut up, ½ parmesan cheese.
  4. Make gravy. To a sauce pan add 3 tbs butter, diced onion and cook until onion is translucent add flower stir cooking for 3 minutes then add broth slowly about 1 ½ cups. Stir and heat thru… makes gravy for your next Costco chicken.
  5. To the above gravy recipe add leftover chicken about 1 cup chopped, 1 bag frozen mixed veggies, one potato diced, into pie dish and cover with store bought pie crust. Make three slits in crust and bake at 350 until the crust is lightly brown, the gravy is bubbling thru the slits and it looks done about 30 – 40 minutes.
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