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Got chicken feet in Chinatown today-- here's to hoping

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
for a nice broth gel. :


I'll let you know if it helps.
post #2 of 21
I've got my : for you!! I'm excited b/c we'll finally be getting some chicken feet. I asked the farmer I get my meat from (she's also the local WAPF chapter leader) if her stock geled when she made stock and she said it usually does. She asked me a few questions about what I did and was as stumped as I was as to why it doesn't gel for me.

Made chicken stock for my mom from the chickens we had for Thanksgiving and hers geled so I must do something right!

Lets hope we both get a good gel!
post #3 of 21

eww..(but good luck)

Hi
I am working on getting the stomache to actually get some chicken feet.
(We have a pet chickens for eggs,) I have heard of the good results though. My chicken stock usually gells w/o extra parts..lol

I heard at least here in Sunny Calif that china town also has butchers where you can get chickens with the heads on..: I discussed buying one with my 10yo dd who is an animal lover, we said it would be too gross to cook , let alone eat. Since I want her to be learning with me I am sticking with just the bones for now..lol
Do you let your kiddos help cook ?

Sbdmom
(a squimish "citified" farmer wannabe)
post #4 of 21
OK, sorry to hijack but about the gelling - I made stock in the crockpot with the bones from our Thanksgiving turkey. I put it in the fridge so the fat would rise up and solidify and I could take it off. (I have never made stock/broth before.) I was quite suprised the next morning when I discovered turkey jello in the fridge! I figured it was fine and froze it anyway. But this is *supposed* to happen? Sorry, I am clueless.
post #5 of 21
I read in a WAPF newsletter that it helps to peel the feet first before you try to make stock with them. The skin is so thick otherwise that the good stuff won't get into the stock with it on. HTH

Kim
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by famousmockngbrd View Post
was quite suprised the next morning when I discovered turkey jello in the fridge! I figured it was fine and froze it anyway. But this is *supposed* to happen? Sorry, I am clueless.
Yes - it is very much supposed to happen and is a VERY good thing!! Great for joint health!
post #7 of 21
We have some bizarre topics in this thread and we really tend to get excited about things that would probably disgust most people. It's great to be here.
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gale Force View Post
We have some bizarre topics in this thread and we really tend to get excited about things that would probably disgust most people. It's great to be here.
no kidding

Whoohoo!chicken feet, turkey jello!Wheeeeeee!
post #9 of 21
: Why yes, yes we do!
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimbernet View Post
I read in a WAPF newsletter that it helps to peel the feet first before you try to make stock with them. The skin is so thick otherwise that the good stuff won't get into the stock with it on. HTH

Kim
Speaking of icky topics... peeling chicken feet-eeeww!

post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimbernet View Post
I read in a WAPF newsletter that it helps to peel the feet first before you try to make stock with them. The skin is so thick otherwise that the good stuff won't get into the stock with it on. HTH
When I read that issue, I remembered that I had some frozen feet in the freezer. I boiled the feet and peeled the skin off under cold running water (yes, it is GROSS). Then I made broth the usual NT way, and it was the first time in two years that my broth gelled! I was so excited I even had dh take a picture of me with a pot of disgusting-looking gelled broth.

Not only did it gel, but the taste was out of this world. The feet definitely add hyper-yummy flavor to broth.

Then I read about making broth in the crockpot, and ever since I've been doing that, my broth gels all the time. I think it's because it simmers at a much lower temperature than when I have it on the stovetop.
post #12 of 21
Thread Starter 
Well, what do you know! It actually worked.

I didn't peel them, but as they simmered, I broke them up. The bones were so soft-- it was easy, and the skin just fell off.

I know this sounds weird, but I feel like by using all the chicken, we're not being wasteful. Of course there is 'good stuff' to be found in marrow, bones, cartilege etc. Why wouldn't there be?

I was once again amazed at the offerings at the Chinatown markets. Every part of the animal is used. There are some very 'unusual', for Americans, animal parts in those shops. I always find it incredibly fascinating to visit these markets. I also see how important immigration is to a vibrant community. Without new arrivals, we may be stuck with only Walmart and box shops, and devoid of the incredible diversity of food we have availlable currently.
post #13 of 21
I still have all of those heads & feet in my freezer - what I thought was only 20-30, turned out to be roughly 50 feet & 50 heads, woo-hoo! Lotsa stock for us this winter!

Peeling the feet, eh? Since they're chopped off at the ankles, would all of the goodies leach out that way? I'll go for the crushing route, sounds easier.

Eyeballs are said to have lotsa goodness.

I love that I can chat about this stuff here too - I was beyond excited when I noticed my turkey jello too!
post #14 of 21
There is no need to peel the feet. I generally pick off the "alligator skin", but I don't peel. Just like when you simmer a whole bird, all the skin and meat fall off after a short time and the bones are exposed. And you get so much collagen from the skin, why would you waste that? As I said, I never peel; my chicken stock gels like finger jello.
post #15 of 21
Thread Starter 
Ok, well, like, I can't help myself. This is the jelly-est stock I've ever made. I just went to the fridge to admire it again-- and it's like 4 solid inches of pure gelatin. No liquid at all. It's so cool.
post #16 of 21
I can totally relate!
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
I was once again amazed at the offerings at the Chinatown markets. Every part of the animal is used. There are some very 'unusual', for Americans, animal parts in those shops. I always find it incredibly fascinating to visit these markets. I also see how important immigration is to a vibrant community. Without new arrivals, we may be stuck with only Walmart and box shops, and devoid of the incredible diversity of food we have availlable currently.
This is the only forum I think I feel comfortable talking about my upbringing. I grew up in NYC chinatown and I remember fondly the foods that were available to me. My friends always get grossed out when I talk about it, but some of the Dim Sum favorites were chicken feet, cow stomach, and duck blood (brown looking jello like squares with scallions and sauce). After going to college, I got into modern cooking with chicken breasts and fish sticks.

Over the past few years, it's been great to come full circle and I feel very happy whenever I use all of an animal. The last pastured chicken I cooked, we ate all the meat, then put the the bones in the crockpot for stock until the bones crumbled when I pressed on them. I then mushed the bones into a paste and fed them to the cats.
post #18 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by saratc View Post
This is the only forum I think I feel comfortable talking about my upbringing. I grew up in NYC chinatown and I remember fondly the foods that were available to me. My friends always get grossed out when I talk about it, but some of the Dim Sum favorites were chicken feet, cow stomach, and duck blood (brown looking jello like squares with scallions and sauce). After going to college, I got into modern cooking with chicken breasts and fish sticks.

Over the past few years, it's been great to come full circle and I feel very happy whenever I use all of an animal. The last pastured chicken I cooked, we ate all the meat, then put the the bones in the crockpot for stock until the bones crumbled when I pressed on them. I then mushed the bones into a paste and fed them to the cats.

Oh, please, I would love to hear more. The energy that exists in the markets is incredible. People working, chatting, the stunning array of food. It's so wonderful. I want to make going a weekly event. It's not the distance from my home that holds me back, it's the awful traffic (It's not NYC, and there is very limited public transportation from where I am). But it's so much more alive and real than any store I usually shop at.
post #19 of 21
----" I know this sounds weird, but I feel like by using all the chicken, we're not being wasteful. Of course there is 'good stuff' to be found in marrow, bones, cartilege etc. Why wouldn't there be?" ----

Not weird at all! I think its a way to honor the animal and the sacrifice. I think traditional cultures used every part of the animal because they needed to but also as a way to honor the spirit of the animal. How wasteful and dis-honoring to throw parts away. We are such a wasteful society.
This really hit home to me when we first started butchering our chickens. It made sense on a really deep level to use all of the chicken I could, not so much because of food scarcity but to honor the gift of the life and to appreciate it more, be humbled by it.
post #20 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NettleSongMama View Post


Not weird at all! I think its a way to honor the animal and the sacrifice. I think traditional cultures used every part of the animal because they needed to but also as a way to honor the spirit of the animal. How wasteful and dis-honoring to throw parts away. We are such a wasteful society.
This really hit home to me when we first started butchering our chickens. It made sense on a really deep level to use all of the chicken I could, not so much because of food scarcity but to honor the gift of the life and to appreciate it more, be humbled by it.
Of course, you're right.

When I was first leaving vegetarianism behind, I saw a PBS show that I think was called Chickens. They profiled a family who raised small amounts of chickens in a bucolic farmstead. The hens were free range and the children were shown looking through the meadow for the eggs. They also showed the father preparing a chicken for a family meal. The way he held the animal, how he gentled and respected it was amazing to me. They show the whole family thanking the animal for nourishing them. They lived so close to their land, they used so few resources and little fossil fuel to get their food. I so enjoyed their mature, caring prospective.

ETA I think it was acutally this I saw on PBS:

http://www.amazon.com/Natural-Histor.../dp/B0000TPAR4
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