Crock Pot Chicken Stock
Sometimes cooking from the heart takes a little time. This recipe is one of those times. Although the cooking time is long (really long) the effort is minimal and the results are nourishing and divine.
This broth is a standard in my freezer year round, I feel exposed without it on hand. In the winter months, I increase the volume so we always have plenty on hand to keep our bodies nourished and strong until the spring arrives. It’s the perfect soup base or delicious to sip on it’s own.
Using a crock pot is just the easiest way to make this. But if you don’t have one, you can use a stock pot and put it on a low simmer.
1 whole organic chicken with giblets if possible, plus any reserved bones and pieces on hand *(see note).
½ Cup apple cider vinegar
1 t turmeric (this adds amazing color)
1 t oregano (I like Mexican it’s more robust)
1 bunch of parsley stems included loosely torn (approx. 2 cups)
2 t salt
Add water to fill the pot and cover the chicken. This may need to be replenished during the cooking process depending on your pot and its seal. No worries, it’s not much of a bother. Just note if you do add water it needs to be hot, if you are using a crock pot.
Using a good knife or kitchen shears, cut the back bone out of the chicken and place in to the stock pot. Take remaining chicken and cut off the tips of each leg and wings to expose the bones. Place everything including the giblets in to the crock pot and combine with remaining ingredients.
Allow the chicken to cook for 2-3 hours or until it’s cooked through. If you are using a stock pot, bring it to a slow simmer and cover the pot and cook until the chicken meat is cooked through. Leaving the cooking pot on, remove the chicken and meat pieces from the stock and cool enough to be able to separate out the meat from the bones. Place the cooked meat aside for later use in soup or other recipes. Return the bones and other pieces back to the pot. Cover and continue cooking for at least 12 hours or longer.
*note: Buying whole chickens is a less expensive way to purchase meat. Recipes calling for boneless meat will leave behind bones and scrap pieces. Save these in a freezer bag and keep them for this recipe. Nothing wasted!
More about this broth:
I truly believe that when we eat we bring from the earth into ourselves. With that in mind, this recipe really is a time to go Organic. You will be eating the essence of this bird and everything it has to offer. It should be as clean and free of pollutants as possible.
The apple cider vinegar provides the acid that allows the vitamins and minerals to release from the chicken bones and add nutrients to the stock. The long cooking time will literally melt away all of the softer parts of the bird and form a gelatin in the stock.
The final product will be a delicious strong base of very basic stock from which you can build soups and other flavors.
I do not use onions or other aromatics at this stage because I feed most of the remaining pieces to my dog (yes, I feed him table scraps and he loves it) as onions are toxic to dogs I do leave them out. If you want to add onions or other aromatics for this recipe please feel free. This is the stuff of kitchen alchemy at play and there’s really no point in holding back flavors that you like and want to try. Make it your own!