Chicken Broth



5 pounds fryer chicken (or 5 LB of thighs, legs or wings)
4 quarts cold water
2 onions, peeled and quartered
3 carrots, peeled and quartered
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 bay leaves
6 sprigs of fresh parsley (or dried parsley)
12 whole peppercorns
3 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. dried sage
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried tarragon
1 tsp. dried basil

Combine ingredients in a large stock pot and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and barely simmer 3-4 hours or until chicken falls off the bone. Adjust the heat so the liquid visibly swirls under the surface and bubbles break the surface leisurely, not rapidly.

As the broth simmers, occasionally impurities will float to the top in the form of fat or foam. Remove it with a spoon. Strain the stock through a fine meshed strainer. Let the stock cool and then transfer it to airtight containers and store in the refrigerator for up to a week. You may find a thin layer of fat that has congealed on the surface of the stock after you have refrigerated it. Just scrape it off with a spoon. You can also freeze the chicken stock up to 6 months.

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Everyone has a different method for making broth and there isn’t a way that is better than others but some will result in a richer flavor. I simply buy 2 fryer chickens (the biggest size available at the store that will fit in my stock pot) and place one in each stock pot, fill my pot with just enough water to cover the chicken, then add my vegetables and seasonings. Exact measurements are not necessary but a recipe like the one listed above is a great starting point.

See soups and main dish sections of this blog for ideas on using your chicken broth. Another easy recipe for using your chicken broth is Buttery Seasoned Rice.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

called me ignorant, but what do you consider "5lb whole chicken"?
5lbs of chicken breasts, 5lb fryer, etc.? And what ways do you use the chicken broth? Thanks

Emily said...

I used whole fryer chickens for my broth but you can use any chicken parts with bones (thighs, legs, wings, etc.). Everyone has a different method for making broth and there isn’t a way that is better than others but some will result in a richer flavor. I simply buy 2 fryer chickens (the biggest size available at the store that will fit in my stock pot) and place one in each stock pot, fill my pot with just enough water to cover the chicken, then add my vegetables and seasonings. Exact measurements are not necessary but a recipe like the one listed above is a great starting point.

Chicken broth is used to flavor other dishes. You can use chicken broth in place of water for additional flavor in many recipes- consider it a great flavor booster in your main dishes. Cook plain rice in chicken broth with a little sautéed onions and garlic (instead of water). Slow cook chicken breasts in your crock pot with chicken broth, peppers and some seasoning and use for burritos (look for recipe under Mexican food), or use the broth as a base for a sauce or soup (look for recipe under soups). You can also add cook your vegetables in chicken broth for extra flavor as well. Chicken broth is a great item to have in your freezer to quickly pull out to make a few easy but flavorful dishes. Does that help answer your question?

I’ll edit my post for additional clarification on the broth- thank you for pointing out the vagueness in the chicken ingredient.

Thanks,
Emily

Holly said...

About how many cups does this make with the 5lb fryer?

Emily said...

I haven't measured how many cups of stock I've received from a batch for a while. I googled it and this website says to expect 20 cups of broth from 5 LB of chicken parts along with the vegetables. This sounds consistent to the results I've received. If you haven't made your own broth or stock, give it a try- you'll be SO pleased with the results and how easy it is.

You can even make your broth in a crock pot overnight if that's easier.

http://www.soupsong.com/bstock.html

Holly said...

Well, I was wondering about the crockpot because I'm cooking a chicken in one right now. Oh, well, maybe next time I'll do it.

Jess said...

This might be a silly question, but what do you do with the chicken meat after it is done cooking? This recipe sounds fantastic to me, but I've never heard of making chicken broth with the meat still on the bones of the chicken. Like do you scoop the chicken meat out and use it in other recipes?

Emily said...

Hi Jess, thanks for stopping by. I discard all of the meat, bones and vegetables because there really isn't any flavor left in them but I do know of others who cook their broth for a shorter period of time, then use the meat for soups.

I've heard of several definitions but I believe most people define chicken broth as being made with meat and bones and chicken stock is made mostly of bones. Either way works.

Holly said...

Wow, throw it away? Surely, you, with all these great recipes, could find SOMETHING to put it in where either the taste is added back or it is seasoned so that it really doesn't matter if it starts out bland. I really am not skilled at cooking so humor me. Couldn't you put it back into the chicken noodle soup that has the broth of the flavor you robbed from the chicken or would you miss the added flavor from the new chicken? or..put it in some kind of crockpotted mexican seasoned concoction for tacos? something that would drown out the chicken flavor anyway...like hot sauce? Come on Emily, I challenge you to be an iron chef! secret ingredient....tasteless chicken.

Emily said...

LOL Holly! Okay, honestly my husband would eat the tasteless white pieces of chicken and vegetables that evening when we strain out the liquid when I'd make the broth from a whole chicken. I'm too grossed out by smelling it simmer for a few hours to even try a bite. :)

Lately I've been purchasing chicken backs from the local butcher to use for broth (they are super cheap and make a great broth). So there really isn't anything worth attempting to eat from the broth we've been making the past two years.

If you really want to use every drop, I'd roast the chicken or turkey first, carve off all the meat, then use the carcass to make broth. I use this process with our Thanksgiving turkey.

Happy cooking!

Bill Laswell said...

Good to see some MSG-free methods of making soups. I am going to try your method for making chicken stock instead of buying chicken stock in cartons as I really want to remove MSG from my diet wherever possible.