Several years ago my father-in-law taught me how to make my own chicken stock and I've never looked back. For starters, I stopped having headaches every time I made a recipe that called for chicken broth! I also discovered that the homemade version of chicken stock simply has a richer, fuller taste than the store-bought version.
This is really more of a method than a recipe. It fits very generously into the category of "life in the slow lane," because this method takes many hours. It doesn't take a lot of work, but it does take time.
For those of you with vegetarian inclinations or convictions, I'm nearly ready to post an instructable on how to make vegetable stock, so stay tuned.
Step 1: The Case for Homemade Chicken Stock
Just for fun, I went out with my 9th grade son to document the sodium content on commercial chicken broth. He was mortified that his mother was standing in the soup aisle, photographing ingredient lists.
I'm glad I went. I really LIKE being able to do things and make things myself. Looking at the nutritional information on the packaging of the chicken broth available in the grocery store convinced me that it's also a really good choice nutritionally.
Here's what I found:
Step 2: Start With Chicken
Step 3: Save It All
Throw it all into the crockpot and cover it with water.
Step 4: Cook for Hours
Step 5: Strain Everything
Step 7: Pour Stock Into Containers
If there are any large pieces of meat left, I usually pick those out and add them to the dogs' next meal. Any meat left doesn't have much flavor left in it because the flavor is all in the thick, beautiful stock.
It really helps to label the stock if you plan to keep a couple of different kinds of homemade stock on hand in your freezer.
I really want to reiterate something important. The process of making homemade chicken broth or stock takes several hours, but it does NOT require a lot of work. Most of the time, the crockpot is doing the heavy lifting. Once this stock is in your freezer, it takes no more time to USE than commercially-prepared stock.
The flavors of this stock are vastly superior to store-bought stock. There is no added sodium. If you're interested in making turkey stock, check out My Sister's Kitchen. The process is similar and the results are delicious.
This homemade stock is a great example of slowing down to eat well.