Here are four reasons why you should make homemade chicken stock:
Number 1: It gives you an excuse to roast a chicken. (As if you needed an excuse)
Number 2: It will make your home smell delicious. Like, crazy, out-of-this-world, how-did-s/he-do-that delicious.
Number 3: Chicken stock from a box/can is kind of scary, when you think about it. Whatever science goes into making a byproduct of meat a non-perishable is something I want nothing to do with. That’s just gross.
Number 4: It is extremely useful in soups, pastas, sides, mains. You name it; chicken stock will make it better.
In other words, you have no good reason not to make this stuff (unless you’re a vegetarian, in which case you get a pass). It’s a great way to make total use of a roasted chicken. Plus, it’s very easy to save for future use. Just pour the stock into Ziploc bags and freeze! Voila – chicken stock at the ready whenever you need it. Oh man, I’m turning into my grandma. I think I’m okay with it, though.
Ingredients (makes approx. 4 cups stock)
1 chicken carcass
3 large carrots
1 large yellow onion
4 celery stalks
4 sprigs fresh thyme
2 bay leaves, dried or fresh
2 teaspoons celery seed
2 teaspoons coarse ground pepper
1. Bring 3 quarts of water and some sea salt to a boil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. 2. While water is heating, slice onions into thick rings and break carrots and celery into pieces. 3. Place all ingredients in boiling water and reduce to a simmer. 4. Continue simmering, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for about 2 hours. Taste for saltiness, and add more if necessary. Stock should reduce by about 1/3. 5. Using a fine mesh strainer and ladle, transfer stock to a large container. You may need to do this more than once, depending on how fine your mesh is. 6. Refrigerate or divide into Ziploc bags and freeze.