Thursday, December 15, 2011

Nearly Free Chicken Stock

I have a confession to make. I am in LOVE with Costco. As I mentioned on my Facebook page a  few weeks ago, I finally broke down and got a membership, and I haven't looked back since. Ummm, $16.59 for 12 quarts of Rice Dream rice milk? Yes, please! And their organic vegetables and fruits? Fabulous, just fabulous!

But, my favorite thing of all has to be their rotisserie chicken. Yes, it's MSPI-friendly! And it's just delicious. Tender and juicy. Yum! (Yes, I know rotisserie chickens aren't anything new or special. But Costco's is so good!) I can get two to three meals for our family out of one chicken. I use it in soups, salads and other yummy dishes. And it's less than $5! Such a great deal! But I take the savings a step further. I use the bones and scraps from the chicken and use it as the base for homemade chicken stock. And it's "Nearly Free" to make this, since you're using items you would normally throw away.

This really doesn't even seem like a recipe that I'm sharing with you, more like a method. Adjust to what works best for you. If you're having turkey for Christmas dinner, you can use this method to make turkey stock.

Nearly  Free Chicken Stock
Source: MSPI Mama

Chicken bones, skin and scraps
Vegetable scraps
Bay leaf

Whenever cooking a meal, place the leftover bones, skin and scraps from the chicken and the scraps from vegetables, such as onion and garlic skins, carrot peelings and celery tops, in a large Ziploc-style bag in your freezer. Continue to add to the bag as you prepare meals.

Once the bag is filled, empty the contents into a slow cooker. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Toss in the bay leaf. Pour in water until all the contents are fully submerged. Place the lid on the slow cooker and turn the cooker on Low. Cook 8-10 hours.

Remove the large scraps from the broth and throw them away. Pour what remains through a fine sieve or colander into a large bowl. Taste the stock. Add more salt, as needed. Place the bowl in the refrigerator and cool for several hours. Skim off any congealed fat. Use broth immediately or divide it into freezer-safe containers and store in the freezer.

Tip: If the idea of using scraps creeps you out, then follow this recipe, which starts with a whole chicken and vegetables.

Vegetarian: To make vegetable broth, use only vegetable scraps.

Quick Start with MSPI Mama: This is one of my Quick Start recipes.

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