I spent some quality time with the WordPress app for Kindle at 4 o’clock this morning. I just couldn’t sleep, and I had some good ideas for my Sunday Dinner post (Rissoto – you’ll see that later this evening). In said post, I spent a good deal of time on why you should use homemade stock, as opposed to stock-in-the-box. And of course, when I got up this morning, I found that my stock-pile was completely spent. Damn….I can’t justify using stock-in-the-box – not today. I’m not completely opposed to it – but it’s Sunday (I have time) and good stock is kind of important (ok, it’s really important) in good risotto, and I just told you to make your own. So while at the store, I picked up some chicken pieces, and now I’ve got the pot going. Here’s what you’ll need if you want to do the same :
- 1 Chicken, or chicken pieces (3-4 pounds)
- 3 celery stalks (with leaves) rough chop
- 3 carrots, rough chop (yes, I’m using baby carrots. But only because they were already in the fridge)
- 1 bulb garlic, cut in half lengthwise
- 2 onions, quartered (leave the paper on)
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 4 sprigs fresh parsley
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. peppercorns
- any vegetable trimmings from leeks, brussel sprouts, fresh herbs, etc. (optional)
- 12 C. water
Add all ingredients into a large stock pot. Pour in enough water to cover (about 12 cups). Bring to a simmer (do not boil) and reduce to medium low. Maintain a constant simmer, with no lid on the pot.
After one hour, remove chicken and allow it to cool (keep pot simmering). When cool enough to handle, pick apart the chicken. Discard the skin, keep the meat for a later use, and add all bones back to the pot.
Simmer the stock for at least another 2 hours.
Strain through a fine mesh sieve. Use immediately. Or store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Can be frozen for months. Skim off any fat that rises to the top.