There’s something completely wonderful about taking your life into your own hands and crafting it by yourself. I always feel so in control and so in touch with the things around me when I work on small DIY recipes. While it may be easier to head to the grocery store and pick up a pre-made something when you’re in need of an ingredient, I can guarantee that it’s much more satisfying to make that something by hand at home. And PS: it’s tastier, too.
Chicken stock is one of the first DIYs I ever tackled. I love the idea of using leftovers to craft something new. Waste not, want not, as they say! This recipe can be made with a raw chicken carcass, most of the meat used for another recipe (as pictured), or the leftover carcass from a cooked chicken. The important thing? The bones. They are the flavor center of any broth. If you are vegetarian, please feel free to leave out the chicken and double up on the vegetables. You’ll have a delicious and flavorful vegetable stock ready for your next soup.
In a large stock pot, combine your main flavor components: the chicken, one carrot stick, one celery stick and one onion (leave the skin on unless it’s very dirty as it adds golden color to your stock). Halve all vegetables so they fit easily in your pot.
Next, add water (8 cups should do it) and 1 ½ tablespoons of salt. You may need to add more salt later on in the recipe but this will do for now. Bring pot to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 1 hour.
Remove chicken and vegetables from stock and bring stock back up to a boil. Reduce heat again and simmer for 30 minutes, uncovered, until 4 cups of stock remain.
Taste your stock. Does it need more salt? Now is a good time to add a bit more if necessary. Once suited to your tastes, allow stock to cool and then strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a re-sealable, freezer-friendly container. Use stock in the next 3 days or freeze for later use.