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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While I consider myself a good cook and can make practically anything, I can't seem to get soups and soup stock right unless it involves opening a can <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/nut.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="nut"> . Yesterday's debacle was chicken noodle soup.<br><br>
Here's what I did: put 2 chicken hindquarters and a chicken breast (all bone in) in crock pot with some garlic and onion powder, a bay leaf and some celery, onion and carrot. Covered it with 6cups water. Left on high for 7hours. It was still watery so I broke down and added some powdered stock for it to be edible. I hate powdered stock (why would it need hydrolyzed corn solids? But I digress). It was... um edible but not great.<br><br>
I've tried the on the stove method by doing the same thing, only simmering for about 4hours. Same results.<br><br><br>
So, am I just not patient enough? Can anyone make a good broth? Chicken or beef? Even veggie... I have tried several recipes and never really gotten great results.<br><br>
Thanks!
 

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The things you did in the crock pot is what I usually do if I'm making chicken stock. Usually I add the wings and drumsticks to a pot of water with carrots, celery, potatoes, black peppercorns, parsley and onions and heat until beginning to boil (and, with the amount I usually make, it can take 2 hours before even getting to that point) and from there simmer for 2 hours. I let cool on the stocetop, strain out the veggies, and jar it for later use. That said, I'm not exactly sure if I understand your question. Are you saying that you want your stock to be thicker? If so, that won't really happen, since all it is is veggie-flavored water. If you're making soup you can always add a little flour to it to thicken it up, or else cornstarch (ick) if you feel the need.<br><br>
Anyways, to make beef stock you follow the chicken recipe, but you add beef bones instead of chicken, and be sure to broil the bone for about 20 to 30 minutes before adding to the liquid. Omit potatoes, and add a tomato if you want to. Veggie stock is the same as the chicken stock, minus the chicken. HTH!
 

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If you get really good, free range chicken/meat, you will get more gelatin. Also, try adding some cider vinegar to help leach out the nutrients and marrow.<br><br>
Oh yea....I also have mine go AT LEAST 24 hours, if not longer. I always do mine in a crockpot, too.
 

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I use the carcass of a whole roasted chicken for stock. I don't have a crock pot so I have to do it on the stove. I break some of the larger bones and put the whole mess in the pot with onions, garlic, carrots, celery, whatever veggies I've got kicking around and simmer it ALL day. At least 8 hours, closer to 10. It really is patience. It needs to simmer for a long time. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sorry... not thicker... more flavorful. I guess the only thing that will help is to leave it longer. Next time I'm going to put it in at night and let it go in the crock for an all night/day thing. That's a good idea. I so want to do this so I don't buy broth in a can or box. No one needs that much salt in a week let alone one meal.<br><br>
Thanks.
 

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I just made a whole bunch of stock tonight! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I think you are wise to try to make good stock, because you can use it for so many things, and like you said, the canned just can't be as good for you. I have had good luck before I started making my own stock using Shelton's no added salt.<br><br>
I can't speak to the crockpot cooking time because I've never made stock in a crockpot. Here's what I can think of to help:<br><br>
FOR CHICKEN BROTH<br><br>
* I would NEVER use chicken breast for stock, because it's too expensive and because you *want* more skin, fat, bones, gristle, etc. for stock.<br><br>
* Some people will brown the chicken and the vegetables first for deeper flavor -- you can do this in the over or in the same pot you make the stock in. I usually don't, but it is nice for a change.<br><br>
* I don't use a bay leaf in the stock. I am not that big on bay leaves, but if I want one for a *particular* recipe, I can always add one. There are lots of things I make that just don't go well with bay leaves.<br><br>
* I don't use onion powder or garlic powder. I think the flavor may be too sharp if you use the powders. Many people don't use any garlic at all. I often will throw in one garlic clove. I put in one whole onion, and whatever nightshade trimmings I have laying around, i.e., the ends and peel (that I would otherwise compost) from onions, garlic, leeks, shallots. I try to save these waste parts in the freezer for stock, but I forget often.<br><br>
* I sometimes throw in one sun-dried tomato. Try it sometime and see if you like it.<br><br>
* I put in one or two whole celery stalks and any celery trim I may have. I also throw in any extra parsley I may have, including stems. I put in one carrot, unpeeled.<br><br>
* I bring the stock to a boil, then turn it down to medium-low and let it simmer partially covered for up to two hours. If the chicken carcass is disintegrating, it has cooked too long.<br><br>
* I then pick the solids out and pour the broth through a paper towel over a mesh strainer. The act of straining it actually helps get rid of a lot of the fat. I pour it into containers, leaving at least one half inch at the top for expansion and freeze it. It is very nice knowing I have a whole bunch of broth ready to go. When you take out the stock to use it, you can scrape the fat off the top before you defrost it.<br><br><br>
FOR BEEF BROTH<br><br>
* I buy the bones and marrow and roast them in the over at 450. You need dark color -- but keep black to the absolute minimum, for obvious reasons. I'd consider browning the vegetables, too.<br><br>
* In addition to the aromatic vegetables listed above for chicken stock, I add 1-2 cloves. Sounds weird, tastes good.<br><br>
* No bay leaf, no sun-dried tomato.<br><br>
* You have to cook the beef broth longer than chicken broth. How much longer, I don't know. I just turn it off when it seems brothy.<br><br>
* General tip -- you may have done this already, but check out the cookbooks you already have, especially the ones you really like. Many will have recipes for "basics," and that almost always includes stock. The recipes will differ a little, so play with them to see what elements you like for yours. By the time you get a stock you're satisfied with, it really will be "yours"! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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My goal over this winter is to master stock making! I'm trying to figure out the best way with chicken. I want the bones to cook for a day or so, but not the meat. I'm thinking maybe if I roast the chicken, remove the meat, and then put the bones/fat/skin in the pot for stock.<br><br>
You can add some vinegar to the (cold) water and let it sit (with the bones in) for an hour or so before you turn on the heat. This will draw more minerals out of the bones, making the stock healthier.<br><br>
Once you have strained everything out of the stock, you can boil it rapidly to reduce it. Supposedly, it should even get syrupy, though this has never happened to me. It does get more flavourful, though.<br><br>
I cool it in the fridge and remove the fat, and save it. Then I use it to start gravy or sauce or to fry with, or make dumplings with chicken stew.<br><br>
You should skim off any foam that rises to the top once it starts to boil, and I think that should be done before you add seasonings. I have been lazy with that in the past and skimpy (I didn't want to waste stock if I didn't have to spoon it off), but lately I have been more vigilant and taking more off, and the flavour has improved.<br><br>
I have read somewhere that full boiling is not good for the stock -- you should simmer it gently. I imagine that it has to do with the fat oxidizing, though I have no real idea why it is recommended. The last stock I made has smelled the best of any so far (beef stock), and I skimmed the most and heated it at the lowest temp.
 

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I just checked out one of my cookbooks' recipes for stock and I got it wrong about the temperature for the beef bones. I'm going to correct it in the above post, but I wanted to note the difference because I'm anal like that. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
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