Nothing beats homemade chicken stock for soups, stews, and sauces. Next time you roast a chicken, save the bones for stock, or purchase backs and legs for this recipe.
What You'll Need
- 5 pounds chicken bones
- 1 large onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 large carrot, cut into thirds
- 2 celery stalks, cut into thirds
- 2 large or 4 small leeks, cut in half lengthwise and washed well
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 12 whole black peppercorns
In a 3-gallon stockpot, combine all ingredients and fill with enough cold water to cover everything by 3 inches when submerged (about 6 quarts). If you don't have a large stockpot, use two smaller pots.
Bring to a rapid simmer over high (do not boil); reduce heat until bubbles barely break the surface. Simmer until flavorful, about 2 hours, skimming stock with a ladle every 30 minutes. Keep the stock at a bare simmer; a hard boil would evaporate too much liquid and make the stock cloudy. Any fat that remains after skimming can be easily removed once the stock is chilled.
Strain stock through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard vegetables. Remove any meat from bones and save for another use; discard bones. Let stock cool completely before refrigerating. (To store, refrigerate, up to 1 week, or freeze, up to 6 months.)
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