From the beginning of time, man has been eating bone stock or broth. You probably remember your grandmother telling you that chicken soup will make you feel better. Usually, you did feel better. Did you ever wonder why? Chicken broth heals your gut because it is rich in gelatin and it protects and heals the mucosal lining of the digestive tract. It also helps fight infection and reduces joint pain and inflammation. Bone broth is rich in calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous which helps bone grow and repair.
Your soups and stews are so much more nutrient dense if you make them your self. It is a perfect healing food, rich in calcium, magnesium, chondroitin sulfate, protein, and much more. Helpful Hints: A recommended sized pot is 8-10 quarts, ideally 18/8 stainless steel or use your crock pot. A smaller diameter and taller stock pot works the best. Waiting to add the parsley at the end is crucial for maintaining the value of the minerals from the parsley.
- 1 free-range stewing hen or “layer”, neck and wings cut up OR 3-4 lbs. of boney chicken parts: a combination of necks, backs, ribs, and wings OR the picked carcass of 2 chickens plus chicken feet (optional) NOTE: chicken feet and heads add alot of gelatin, so you can use just them!
- 4 or more quarts of pure, filtered water to cover all bones
- 2 T. apple cider vinegar
- 3 celery stalks
- 2 carrots
- 1 bunch parsley, chopped loosely
- Roast the chicken or pieces for color and to improve the flavor. Place on parchment paper and roast for 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven until slightly browned.
- When browned, add chicken or bones with 4 quarts of water. Add 2 T. raw apple cider vinegar and let set for 30 minutes-1 hour.
- After chicken-cider-water mixture as set, chop celery, carrots, onions and bay leaves to stock pot. Bring pot to a boil. Skim the scum from the top of the water and discard.
- Now turn to low heat. You want to see movement in the pot. This is not a rolling boil; just a simmer.
- Cook uncovered for 12-24 hours. This is cumulative time, you may wish to turn off the burner while you sleep or leave the house. Simply leave the pot on the stove, and bring to a boil again when you turn it back on.
- Skim any scum and discard.
- After the stock has cooked, about 10 minutes before finishing, add fresh parsley. 1-2 Thyme and or oregano can also be added .
- Finishing stock:
- Pour through a strainer or sieve into a glass or ceramic bowl. Allow to cool on the counter until it reaches room temperature.
- Place in the refrigerator to cool completely. After a couple of hours you should have a gelatinous stock with chicken fat on the top. Skim off the fat and use for other cooking and sautéing.
- Place stock in containers. If using glass mason jars allow 11/2-2 inches head space on the top. (to avoid jars cracking)
- Stock may be frozen up to 5 mo. or refrigerated 5-7 days.