Saturday, February 21, 2015

ITS STOCK DAY. YUMMY. SIMPLE. GOODNESS. AND A LITTLE HOW TO...

Two nights ago I roasted a chicken. Today that gift keeps on giving in the form of chicken stock, and tasty treat for the hogs!

So what do you do after you roast a chicken for your family?

Pick it clean and throw it away... Because what else is there to do with it, right?

I hear ya, I used to do the same. Pick every last string of chicken from the carcass, save it for lunch meat or a tasty stew. But there's so much more that chicken can give back to you! Not to mention I boiled the giblets and fed those to the dogs for dinner.

Last night I decided that now is the time. Now is the time to dive deeper into this lifestyle we love so much. Now is the time to get off my butt and make stock of that carcass! Now is NOT the time for laziness, now is the time for preparedness! I have read blog after blog preaching to the high heavens that homemade stocks and bone broths are the way to go...

Well blogging woman out there who I admire and look up to, here I am thanking you for all of your preaching and advice, your addiction is now my addiction.

My name is Quincy, and I love making homemade organic chicken stock.

Ever have that moment when stock is the only ingredient you don't have.... Or the moment when, dang I could really use some stock about now? Or, wow its 4:30 and I haven't even begun to think about dinner.... Never again! Making our own stock was so easy and plentiful that I cannot see just throwing out a carcass ever again. Them things are valuable... aaaaand I got 5 quarts from that baby!

Things you'll need:
- 1 chicken carcass (ours was store bought organic, cannot wait to have our own broilers in the freezer by this summer! Ordering chicks next month...)

-veggies and seasonings for the stock (I used all the veggie left overs from dinner-- carrots, onions, potatoes, even the lemons I cooked inside the chicken originally)

- large enough stock pot

- pressure canner. I used this one! Vintage cookwares/appliances + Quincy = TRUE LOVE ( you can also can the broth by hot water bath, on our stead we opt for pressure canning all the way)

- jars (pint or quart)

- matching rings and lids for jars

I started after dinner, clean-up, and bedtime rituals were over. I added the carcass and whatever left over chicken bits we would not eat, the veggies, and seasonings to the stock pot. I filled it to the handles with water and set the burner on low. It simmered all night, roughly 12 hours by the time I removed it from heat.

In the morning I strained all the solids parts off and that was fed to the pigs for breakfast as you can see
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Next I poured the stock into quart sized jars leaving a 1" head space, and sealed the lids.


Since this is my first time boiling down a carcass and canning stock I decided to follow the method of another blogger cool the broth in the fridge overnight. The idea is that the fats will separate and rise to the top allowing them to be skimmed off the top the next morning. So this turns out to be a two step process (almost 3 in my case since I started that night after dinner) but well worth it for wholesome stock such as it is. The fat which rose to the top was also fed to the pigs in order to use everything and avoid the yucky fat smell in my kitchen garbage. 

The broth was added back to a stock pot, brought to a rolling boil then poured back into jars. With the lids and rings properly secured the jars were processed at 10 lbs of pressure for 25 minutes. Done! Now just to let the jars air cool to room temperature. 

***NOTE: Depending on altitude you may have to change the pounds per pressure, at higher altitudes it is recommended to process at 15 pounds of pressure. Check your pressure canners manual for instruction.

Bada bing! Bada boom! Such an easy and painless process, not to mention all the things I accomplished during all the processing time!

Headed out to plant more seeds!

Q