Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon. Isaiah 58:10
When we hit the French mission field, part of my work will be working in the kitchen to provide food for the campers. I want to share my culinary passions with you, so it seemed appropriate to do a quick video and blog post regarding a simple dish for you to make. Often Jesus used food as a ministry tool, and for good reason, it's a universal language everyone understands! Since it's January, I wanted to show an easy way to make a simple chicken stock.
There are many different ways and variations on soup stocks (not to mention sauces in general), so we are going to concentrate on one simple method. There is an accompanying video for this brief recipe that you can watch below:
This is one method, and there are as many variations as their are cooks! Use what you have & experiment.
1-3 chicken carcasses (from store rotisserie chickens). Be mindful of the seasoning type, as that will flavor your liquid accordingly. I store the carcasses in the freezer until I’m ready.
4-5 large carrots
4-5 celery stocks
1-2 cut onions
A few bay leaves
Cold water or ice to fit your size pot.
Put all ingredients in a large pot and simmer until you feel flavor extraction has occurred. Some people swear on overnight or long cooking times, while others do 3-4 hours max. For my intent in this recipe, it’s what fits in your schedule. If you go for a long cook time, cover the pot or you won't have any liquid left.
After cooking, strain and remove ingredients from the broth. If you don’t have a fine strainer, use a colander with some paper towels.
You can reserve the veggies and blend/process back into the soup to add body. Often, they will not have much structure, and have given up their flavor to the liquid. But, blending them back in will reduce waste. Note this will make the broth cloudy, so if you want a clear broth, don’t do this step!
Like the leftover veggies, you can pick the chicken carcasses clean. We use this meat for chicken salad, as it doesn’t have much flavor on its own. Again, not necessary but a reduction of waste.
Once you have strained the broth from the ingredients, it’s time to chill it down as fast as possible. You want to get it out of the bacteria “danger zone” and below 40F as fast as possible. Your first thought is to put it in the fridge, but that puts everything that is already cold at risk of heating up! In the winter (below 40F), I set the pot outside to cool. Use mother nature to your advantage, as long as no critters are going to be interested in your soup!
At this point, you have a blank canvas. Notice, we did not add any salt to this point! When you make your final soup, this is when you add salt and additional flavoring.
So, how do I boost the flavor even more?
So glad you asked!
A traditional method is called a “double stock”. You essentially make soup again, but instead of water, you use a stock you have already made. Want more? Make a “triple” stock.
For an easy method, add some bouillon or pre made stock to augment. Keep in mind that bouillon cubes contain a lot of salt, so be careful.