Yesterday was a dark, dreary, and rainy day. This could only mean one thing, it was time to take that picked clean chicken carcass out of my freezer and make some stock. (Sorry about the above picture, there’s nothing sexy about a chicken carcass).
And yes, homemade chicken stock is really as important as they say it is. Sure I have occasionally cheated with Better Than Bouillon (salty, but tastier than canned or cubed), but nothing compares to making your own. Alton Brown has a good recipe for stock here, but I usually wing it.
Simply drop a chicken carcass in a pot, (I prefer to use chicken carcasses over a raw bird – less waste and you spend less time skimming fat off the top), add some quartered onions, garlic, carrots, celery, bay leaves, whole peppercorns, fresh thyme, and salt. Add just enough water to cover the carcass and veggies, bring to a boil, then reduce to low and simmer for several hours. Skim the fat off the top every now and again.
Once the stock is nice and golden it is done. Strain the liquid through a sieve lined with a cheesecloth and refrigerate. After refrigerating a little more fat will solidify on top – skim that off. It will keep in the freezer for a couple months.