I know that you probably all know by now that I love to make my own stock. Chicken stock, beef stock, turkey stock. . . whatever I’ve got for meat trimmings and leftovers, I will stick in a pot of boiling water and make stock out of it. I mean, it’s free, right? How can you lose? Plus, it’s delicious. It adds so much more depth to recipes when you use stock that has lots of flavors in it from veggies and herbs.
But I discovered a whole new way to make chicken stock that I think you’re going to love.
Typically, I save up carcasses for a few months and wait until I have enough to fill my huge 25-quart stock pot at least halfway with bones. Then I fill it up with water and other things, bring it to a boil, and basically simmer it all day. I won’t give up that method, because it’s a good one.
But. I have a recipe for a whole roasted chicken in a crockpot that I just love. It’s got tons of rosemary and garlic and makes the chicken so moist and tasty.
So, at the end of the day, when we’ve eaten what chicken we want and carved the rest of the meat off the bones, this is the easiest thing in the world to do.
Leave all the veggies (onion, garlic, etc.) that you may have been cooking with the chicken. Leave the juice that’s already in there from the chicken roasting all day. Basically, just toss the bones and trimmings back in the crockpot. At this point, I add a bit of celery and some carrots, maybe some more fresh herbs, salt and pepper, and of course, enough water to come almost up to the top of the pot. Turn the crockpot back on and let it go all night–in the morning, you’ve got stock.
Just wait for it to cool a bit, strain it, and put it in freezer containers. Of course, I can only use this method if the next day is Saturday or Sunday, because I don’t have time to be messing with stock in the mornings before work. But it’s a great system–you don’t end up with quite as much, obviously, as if you’re using a huge pot, but it’s a good way to just take care of the immediate carcass. The crockpot is already out and everything! This batch netted me four three-cup containers–not bad, considering it really wasn’t any work at all.