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Homemade Chicken Broth

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Making homemade chicken broth or stock is easy and adds incomparable flavor to soups, sauces, and a myriad of other dishes. This simple, flexible recipe will bring your cooking to new heights as you banish processed, sodium-laden canned broth from your kitchen and start cooking with rich, wholesome, deeply flavorful stock.

This recipe calls for fresh chicken. No doubt this makes the clearest, most flavorful stock. But feel free to add additional bones or parts from roast or grilled chickens. I keep a bag of such bits and bones in the freezer to add to the pot when I make stock.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 lbs. fresh chicken (necks, backs, wings, legs, bones)
  • 2 onions, peeled or leeks
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 carrot (optional)
  • 8 black peppercorns (optional)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)
  • 2 sprigs fresh parsley (optional)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

Preparation:

  1. Put chicken in a large pot and cover with 6 qt. cold water. Bring just to a boil. Skim off and discard any foam that rises to the surface. Add remaining ingredients, return just to a boil, and reduce heat to maintain a steady, gentle simmer. (Excessive boiling will make a cloudy broth.)
  2. Let cool to warm room temperature. Strain and discard solids. Keep chilled and use or freeze stock within a few days.
  3. Well frozen broth will keep for months. I freeze stock in 1- and 4-cup containers to use whenever recipes call for broth or stock. Defrost and bring to a boil before using.

Makes approximately 6 quarts Homemade Chicken Stock.

Note: Many recipes for stock do not call for salt and even warn against adding salt to stock with horror stories of overly-salted dishes arising from salty stock. The teaspoon of salt called for in this recipe adds just a tiny note of brightness to the stock and helps draw flavors out of the ingredients; it is not enough to fully season the stock or any resulting dish.

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