A lot of recipes rely on stock to add flavour. By making your own from scratch, you can be sure that it is not only incredibly tasty but also full of goodness and free from any nasties! Chicken stock is very easy to make and possibly the most versatile stock to have, as it can be used in nearly any recipe.
Ingredients Chicken carcass
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 bay leaves
Place all the ingredients in a large pot. I try to pick off as much meat from the carcass as possible but don't worry too much about this. Any left will add extra nutritional value to your stock. Scrape all the juices and bits off the carving or roasting dish, if you haven't already used them for gravy.
If you like, you can add other ingredients to taste, such as salt and pepper, left over vegetables from dinner, tops of vegetables such as celery or leeks, cardamom pods.
All in the pot
For hob cooking - place on hob and bring to a boil. Reduce to a low simmer and leave for at least 4 hours.
For slow cooker - cook on low for at least 24 hours.
Strain into a large jug. Mash the solids gently to ensure you get every drop of stock into the jug.
Leave to cool. The fat will come to the surface and solidify, so if you like, you can easily remove it at this point.
Your stock will be very concentrated, so add water to make it up to 2l.
Divide evenly between 4 containers. Stored in the fridge, it will last for up to 3 days. After this, you can keep it another 4 days (so a week in total) but you should boil it rapidly for 20 minutes before using. Stored in the freezer, it will last for up to 3 months.
Ready to use
Usage tip As this stock is quite strong, I tend to use 0.5l of stock and 0.5l of water in place of 1l of commercial stock.
It is a great way to add a wonderful natural flavour to your cooking. It is also a very good food for invalids and those recovering from stomach flu, as it is packed full of protein but very easy to swallow and digest.
Nanna Banner is my mother. She always cooks from scratch and usually makes up her own recipes. I had grown up and left home before I discovered you could buy stock in cubes or powder! As well as believing in the healing power of food, she is a big fan of folk remedies and traditional medicine. As children, we were often dosed with her home made Cough Syrup and I still swear by it to this day!