I believe that stocks are the blood line of any good restaurant, and basic stockmaking can be learned by anybody. There are many substitutes and alternatives out there (those ones that look like giant juice boxes) but none of them come close to the flavor and nutritional value of real chicken stock.
Making our own stocks at Niko’s allows us to maximize flavor in everything from soups, sauces, braises and even our rice. It also helps us to utilize more and waste less. This is what I practice every day when I’m in my restaurant kitchen or at home and hope that this post inspires you to do the same.
For some more info on stocks check out my old post during my FCI days.
6 lb Chicken Bones (Backs & Necks)
4 large Carrots
3 sticks of Celery
3 medium Onions
1 bunch Thyme
½ cup Whole Black Pepper
1 bunch Parsley Stems
10 Bay Leaves
1. Place chicken bones into a 12 quart stock pot and fill ¾’s with cold water. Leave enough room in the pot for the vegetables…you can add more water afterwards.
2. Let the water come to a simmer and skim off the impurities that rise to the top.
3. Add the Vegetables and the Bouquet (Thyme, Pepper, Bay and Parsley stems)
4. Let the stock simmer for 3-4 hours checking in once in a while to adjust the heat and to skim some of the fat off.
skimming the fat during the cooking process is very important.
5. Strain the stock using a ladle and a fine strainer. If you strainer isn’t fine enough you can use cheese cloth to line the strainer. I use a few smaller containers so that the stock cools down faster.
A useful tip for storing your stock I find is to use small quart size plastic containers with lids and store them in the freezer. Whenever your working on a recipe you can pull it out, measured and ready to go.