Just yesterday, one of my favorite bloggers had a small paragraph in her daily post...
I picked off all the meat, I threw the skin and bones into the chicken broth and let it simmer for 45 minutes before straining it – holy cow was this broth flavorful! The best part was that Tony loved it!Funny thing happened to me at the store yesterday. I was walking by the deli department and they actually had a sale on rotisserie chicken. Only $4.99 for an already cooked, fully seasoned chicken. I snapped up 2! Then, on the end cap of the very next aisle, I saw chicken stock on sale for $4.99 a quart. Really??? Ponder that for a moment. A fully cooked seasoned chicken is the same price as the stock you make from the bones??? Really??? I could get all philosophical on you, but really, what is wrong with this country? No wonder houses are being foreclosed on. Be cheap, be a cook, make your own stock and get a FREE chicken.
FALL SOUP SEASON is
It's just habit for me now, I make stock every week. Between gravies, soups, rice (really, make your rice in chicken stock in place of water for deeper flavors) and what ever I think of, it always needs to be replaced. And, since we are empty nesters, we always seem to have vegetables left over that are close to going bad. Much better to make a stock than to toss in the garbage. be cheap, be a cook and be a good steward of the Earth.
Now, if I ran a restaurant, or was attending a prestigious cooking school, consistency would be very important. The exact same volume and variety of vegetables and bones would be used every day. the stock would be the same every day. Mine isn't. I use what I have...
Are in the stock I am showing. Next week, I will have some Asparagus and Artichokes. Just go through your veggie drawer and see what you have. Do a rough cut, they are there for flavoring, and will be strained out in the end.
As to the seasonings, I cook the stock with the bird, skin and all. Already seasoned. You want the stock flavorful, but you want to be able to add seasoning to whatever you are putting the stock into. So, just the seasoning on the chicken is plenty, no more. And certainly no additional salt. It's easy to add salt to your dishes as they cook, if you start with a salty broth or stock, you run the risk of a too salty dish.
Because I cook with so much of the fatty parts.
The fat does rise to the top.
I skim every few hours so the stock is not full of fat.
OK, the technique is painfully simple...
Fill a big pot with water.
Drop in the bird carcass
Add the veggies
Get the water simmering (simmering only, not a rapid boil)
Cover and check every few hours
The Stock is done when the bones break easily (the connective tissues have all rendered out). Takes about 8-10 hours.
Before Rachael Ray and even before Alton Brown... But after Julia Child... And somewhere around the time of Graham Kerr (But I am digressing with the foodie timeline), there was JEFF SMITH... THE Frugal Gourmet.
His catch phrase, "Frugal doesn't mean cheap. Frugal means that you don't waste anything." is becoming a way of life for me. I loved my time on the Virgin Isles, but it was not cheap. So, frugal to eat better became my new catch phrase. I don't mind paying for a premium ingredient, but I will use it all. And by stretching the food I do buy, I can fit more in my food budget.
This day, I made 4 quarts of stock. I put them in freezer bags, marked the date. 3 went in the freezer, one in the fridge. All from the carcass of one bird and leftover veggies.
The equivalent cost of 4 FREE chickens.
Be a Cook
Get a free chicken (or 4)
And what do you have planned for your FREE $100???
*** *** *** *** *** *** ***
But the key to saving $100 or MUCH more over the course of a year, is to make it a habit. If the price is the same, buy bone in chicken pieces. Once the bones have been removed (by fork, knife or teeth), save em. Are you making chicken wings, save em. These pieces are great to use to make chicken broth (like Biz did above). Perfect for adding great flavor to a rice dish. If you love your Rotisserie Chickens (like I do), save those bones. You can even freeze em for when you are ready to make stock.
So, of course making stock is one of my favorite "52 Uses For a Rotisserie Chicken"! And once it becomes habit for you, it will become your number one use as well.
I even use this chicken stock whenever I make chili. But that's a tale for another post.
So, I am pleased to list this as one of my "52 Recipes for Soup, Chili or Chowder"
And if you think you might want to give this Stock a try yourself (very easy), please take a minute and "Pin" it to your Pinterest Boards. And if you want to see more of my Soup Recipes, feel free to join the fun and Follow me...