Chicken stock is like the little black dress of household recipes: it goes with everything (or, more precisely, in everything), feels effortless, and will certainly help you land a date for Friday night. As a base ingredient, it might not seem as sexy as, say, prosciutto or ricotta or (note to self: add blog to the list of activities to avoid while hungry) fennel, but it deepens the flavor profile of any dish in which it’s used. So, yeah, I guess chicken stock is pretty sexy. I think we’re on to something here.
And making homemade stock allows you to repurpose all those errant chicken carcasses you have laying around the house. Whenever I whip up a batch, I feel like a settler straight out of Oregon Trail—even if I didn’t roast my own bird and am simply trying to hide the evidence of the Costco rotisserie chicken I demolished on the car ride home from the store.
So chop up some carrots, onions, celery—mirepoix for your nerves, henny—garlic if you like, then throw a bundle of herbs in there, an old boot—whatever, man—and, as Carl Weathers would say, you’ve got yourself a stew. You could use another kind of protein base for this stock recipe like turkey or duck or ham—I’m not your mom, and I don’t know your fridge.
I just want you to eat well.
- Carcass of one roast chicken
- 1 head of garlic, unpeeled and sliced horizontally
- 3 large carrots, cut into large chunks
- 3 stalks of celery, cut into large chunks
- 1 large yellow onion, quartered
- 1 tbsp. whole peppercorns
- 2 tbsp. course salt
- 3-5 bay leaves
- 1 bunch of fresh thyme, tied with kitchen twine
- Place all your ingredients in a large stockpot. Pour in enough water to cover ingredients by at least an inch.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for at least 4 hours. (8 hours if you can. Overnight works great.) Add up to ¾ cup water at a time every few hours as needed to keep ingredients submerged.
- Once cooled, strain through a colander. Store the stock in containers and discard the solid ingredients.