Save all those bones!
Making your own broth is a cinch. It is a simple process, tastes rich and flavorful, is super healthy, and stretches your chicken dollar even further.
After cooking and eating your lovely pastured bird, be sure to save all the bones and bits and pieces from your chicken. If you really want to do it right, get some chicken backs and feet from us too. In our kitchen we keep a bag in the freezer of these sorts of things. Anytime we cook a bird, or any other animal really, we stow away any leftover bones and bits and when the bag is full we make broth. Bone broth. Mineral and nutrient rich bone broth.
Here’s what you do: Place all your leftover bones and bits in a big pot with a lid. Barely cover with water and slowly bring to a simmer. You don’t want to cook it too high as anything above a slight simmer tends to blend the fat into the broth making it a bit cloudy. Some people skim the top cruddy looking stuff as it goes along. Some people skim off all the fat. I try to keep things simple and I also feel like a little fat in my broth adds flavor. So long as it’s not too much fat I don’t worry much about skimming. I run it through a sieve at the end anyway.
Sometimes my broth batch is made up only of animal bits and it is perfectly fine. However, if I’m more on my game, I’ll add herbs, especially bay leaves, and any veggies I think might bump up the flavor. Onions. Celery. Carrots. Garlic. This is a perfect place to add veggie scraps. If you’re really into it you can keep a veggie scrap bag in the freezer right next to your bone bag. Onion ends and skins make the broth turn a gorgeous bronze color.
I prefer to salt later when I’m cooking, but you could salt it at any time.
Cook low and long. At least a whole day if not more. The veggies probably only want to be in there for a few hours though. They’ll just turn to mush. When you’re done let it cool a bit, strain everything out, and pour whatever you’re not using soon into freezer safe jars. If you make a big enough batch you’ll have all the broth you’ll need for a few months.