Friday, March 29, 2013

Chicken Stock (Bone Broth)

Chicken Broth:

Making your own chicken stock not only will save you money but it will nourish and heal your body.  One good quality chicken will produce about the same amount of chicken broth that you could buy for the cost of the chicken.  But you also will get the chicken meat.  So when you buy a good quality whole chicken, do not look at the cost as exorbitant because not only are you getting the meat, you  are also getting a lot of stock.  
In addition, there is no ready-made chicken broth available for purchase (that I am aware of) that does not contain yeast extract (a hidden source of MSG) which is on the list of foods/ingredients to avoid.  MSG is used to enhance the flavor of meat (for example, bouillon cubes are a cheap stock substitute that get their meat flavor from MSG).  Here is the ingredient list for McCormick beef bouillon cubes:  Ingredients - Salt, Sugar, Monosodium Glutamate (Flavor Enhancer), Hydrogenated Palm Olein, Corn Starch, Onion, Beef Meat, Caramel Color, Artificial Flavor, Disodium Inosinate (Flavor Enhancer), and Spices.

Not only does store bought cartons and cans of broth, and bouillon cubes contain no healing properties, they all contain MSG which is an excitotoxin and an unhealthy ingredient for all person's health (consider yourself lucky if you get an instant migraine from MSG).  If you don't consciously feel the effects, know that it is a toxin that must be cleared out of your body and that has been linked to many serious chronic diseases.

Homemade chicken stock is incredibly easy to make, but plan enough time for it to slow cook (24 hours is best but anywhere from 12 hours to 36 hours works).


Chicken carcass and all drippings remaining from Baked Chicken
Filtered water
Something acidic (lemon or apple cider vinegar)
Chicken neck and feet (optional)
Carrot (optional)
Celery stalk (optional)

If you are making your broth in the same pot that you baked your chicken, don't bother to clean the pot.  Immediately put the carcass back into the drippings in the pot after you have removed the chicken meat and start your broth cooking.  Tear apart the bones (at the joints) and break up the rib cage.  Next add the neck and/or feet if available.  If you have stuffed the carcass with lemon to bake, that is sufficient you do not have to add anything more that is acidic.  Otherwise add 1 Tbl of apple cider vinegar or two lemon quarters.  You must add something acidic at this point to draw out the minerals and collagen.  If I have an old carrot or old celery stalk, I add this too. 

Fill up the pot to the top with room temperature filtered water and place on the stove top.  Place a lid on tight (not cracked) and bring to a simmer.  If you get scum on the surface, you can skim it off at this point.  Reduce heat to low (you don't want it to boil) and keep the lid on tightly, let slow cook for 24 to 36 hours (a minimum of 12 hours).  You can also make the broth in a ceramic crock pot if you can keep the temperature low enough.  Make sure it does not turn itself off automatically after 4 to 8 hours.

After a long, slow cook time, turn off heat and remove lid to cool.  I usually let it cool about 30 minutes and then with clean tongs, I remove all the bones and chunks.  Then using a strainer, as shown in the photo above, pour the broth into a large bowl.  Cool further, cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator to cool for several hours. 

Remove from refrigerator and skim fat off surface (if there is any).  Use your broth to make healing chicken rice soup (tomorrow's post), or put into containers and freeze.  I like to always have some frozen broth in the freezer for emergency illnesses.


The best broth is like jello.  It is hard to find chickens that will produce this quality of broth.  I find that the broth made from good quality turkey carcasses is typically more gelatinous, perhaps because turkeys are more wild and free range better even when feed is available.  I always buy two turkeys at Thanksgiving, one for Thanksgiving and another that I bake around Easter.  Turkeys are so large that you can make twice as much broth from them.  You must not use the standard grocery store turkey, such as Butterball, that is filled with toxins.  Only make broth from your turkey if you have bought a good quality one.
Beef Broth:
Making beef broth is similar to making chicken broth and equally as nourishing.  Buy 100% grass fed soup bones.  I like to first flour and brown them in a skillet (for improved broth flavor).  I use about three bones per pot of broth.  Place the bones in your broth pot (I use the same glass pot with lid that I use to make chicken broth), plus 2 lemon quarters or 1 Tbl of apple cider vinegar (I prefer using lemons but either is fine).  Also add a carrot and celery stalk.  Place lid on tight and follow the directions above for chicken stock. 

Important Tips:

When making any type stock, be sure to cook with the lid on tight, not cracked so you don't evaporate away all of your liquid.  Also be sure to add room temperature, not hot water, and cook over a low heat (it should not simmer with bubbles) for a long period of time. 
Bone broths are extremely healing for gut and digestive issues, and are the first line of defense to bring the gut back into balance.  Bone broth in combination with garlic, onion, spices and fresh herbs (my healing soup) is an incredible immune booster warding off and fighting off cold and flu germs.  Making your own stock is a skill worth learning.
Lord my God, I called to you for help,
and you healed me.  Psalm 30:2


1 comment:

  1. I finally made my first broth! Thank you for sharing your wisdom and experience.