Chicken Broth Part II


 Chicken Broth Part I is

At this point we have already cooked the chicken with vegetables and seasonings.  The chicken has been removed and the meat stripped from the bones, and the bones and skin put back into the pot.  Put the pot back onto the stove and slowly simmer for 48 to 72 hours, adding water when needed.






After 48 to 72 hours the bones and skin will have reduced considerably.  I empty the pot, through a fine strainer, into a large pitcher.  I like to press out any liquid remaining in the chicken parts.  The bones are soft and will crush when you put pressure on them, this is good thing, when the bones go soft you know that the minerals have leached out of them and into your broth, making the broth packed full of nutrients.

Once you have drained the liquid out of the chicken mush and strained the water, place the pitcher into the refrigerator to cool completely.  This allowes the fat to rise to the top and solidify so it is easier to remove.  We do want some fat in our broth, but not as much as is produced. 

After a few hours you can see the fat as risen and solidified.  Also the broth itself will thicken (depending on the chicken) sometimes the broth will be so solid you can cut it, other times the broth just seems a little thicker.  The is gelatin that has come from the bones gelatin is very good for you, a very digestible form of protein.  Skim all the fat off the top.  If the fat is cold it is very easy to skim, it just breaks off in big lumps.  This fat can be saved for cooking if you would like, potatoes are really good fried in this fat.

Then pour the broth in to individual containers, in amounts that suit you.  I like to use small, plastic, containers that hold two cups of broth.  Then I add a little lup of fat into each container.  Don’t be afraid of good fats, we need them to adsorb certain vitamins.   

The broth is then stored in the freezer.

Isn’t it such a beautiful dark brown color, this broth is rich, full of flavor and packed full of nutrients.  It can be added to any recipe that calls for broth, bouillon cubes (which are just chemicals and not good for you) or just water for an added punch of flavor.  Try cooking rice in broth for a wonderful flavor and added nutritional value.  Broth is also good for the sick, whose bodies need the nourishment, but also need something easy to digest.


Chicken Broth Part I


” Why is chicken soup superior to all the things we have, even more than relaxing “Tylenol”?  It is because chicken soup has a natural ingredient which feeds, repairs and calms the mucous lining in the small intestine.  This inner lining is the beginning or ending of the nervous system.  It is easily pulled away from the intestine through too many laxatives, too many food additives…and parasites.  Chicken soup…heal the nerves, improves digestion reduces allergies, relaxes and gives strength.”
Hanna Kroeger Ageless Remedies from Mother’s Kitchen

 Chicken broth is one of the easiest ways to add nutritious foods to our family’ diet.  Chicken broth when cooked slowly over a few days becomes a super food full of vitamins, enzymes and minerals that nourishes the body, and heal disease.  There is a lot of research about the value of chicken broth that is beyond the scope of this post and blog, but if you would like to research more here are a few good articles about the value of chicken broth:  Here, Here, Here and Here.

I like to make chicken broth in a  big batch and freeze it for quick easy meals.  Of coarse I use chicken broth in soups, but I also use it in  mashed potatoes, casseroles, any where liquid is required and I want a little punch of nutrition and flavor.  Chicken broth is easy to make, but does require time to get the full benefits of the chicken, when I do broth it takes at least three days.

 I start with two chickens and place them with all the pieces (giblets and neck) in a large stock pot.  I add onions, celery, thyme, sage, salt, pepper, garlic and vinegar. I fill the pot with water and bring it to a boil


 Once it is boiling hard, reduce the heat so it is lightly simmering and skim the impurities as they rise to the surface.
  You want it to cook very slowly.


After a couple hours the chicken will be fully cooked.  At this point take the chicken out, let it cool and little and strip the bones of the meat.  I usually make chicken noodle soup on broth making day!  the cooked chicken can be used for other recipes and also freezes well.

At this point all the bones and skin go back into the pot to simmer slowly for 48 hours…..

(to be continued….)

Chicken Nuggets…..Method or Madness?

I was asked to share my recipe and method for making chicken nuggets.

I have a confession to make,
I am a “fly by the seat of my pants” chicken nugget maker.

I don’t have a formal recipe and my method has just been made up over the years.

I use three basic ingredients:

Chicken Breast
(or tenders, depending on the price)
Bread Crumbs
(seasoned if you like, I just add some salt and pepper)


If I am using chicken breasts, I cut those up to my desired size.  Then I crack a few eggs into a ziplock bag (gallon size) and moosh it up so the egg yolks are broken up and mixed a bit.  Then I add the chicken, seal the bag and shake it up so the chicken is coated.   Then transfer the chicken into another ziplock bag that has bread crumbs added to it, seal and shake.  I then lay the chicken on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees until cooked.

If freezing, wait to bag the chicken until it has completely cooled, I usually put in on a plate in the refrigerator to quicken the process.  When you are ready to eat, just warm it up and enjoy.

Very simple, and much better than the processed chicken parts you buy at the store.

First Things First

In the majority of my salads I add grilled chicken. I don’t really know why I call it grilled, because it isn’t really grilled, more like baked, but grilled sounds so much better so that is what I will call it. Anyway, in most of my salads I add chicken, I am serving them as the main meal and I think it helps to fill up tummies when there is a little meat. It also helps Dadzoo wrap his brain around the idea that, seriously, dinner is a salad. Not that he complains, but I swear I can see visions of steak and potatoes dancing around his head while he eats my “chick” food!

I figured I would show you how I bake my chicken.

First I place the chicken breast in a plastic, zip lock bag.

Then I pound it like a crazy woman, it is fabulous therapy! It needs to be pounded out evenly so it will cook evenly.

When it is nice and flat, place it on a baking sheet and season, I add salt and pepper, very simple, but good.

Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes, or until done, turning the chicken at least once in the cooking process.

When the are all cooked I let them cool, then place them in a bag in the freezer, then when I need them they get pulled out and thawed all day in the refrigerator.

Later today I will post the first salad recipe in my series!

Chicken…er…Turkey broth

I really enjoy canning. I love that I can take with my own two hands wonderfully nutritious foods and preserve them in a way that my family can enjoy it for months to come. It satisfies me to know that no matter what happens, there will be food on the table, and not just any food, but good foods without added preservatives and flavorings. When I am finished canning and I line those jars up on the shelves I feel a sense of pride and accomplishment. I am a Home Economist and I have ensured for a little while that the economy of my home will stand, with full belly’s!

For the last little while I have been trying to use all my food to the last little bit and not let anything go to waste. Sometimes I am really good at this, other times I slack off a bit! Sunday I made a big Turkey dinner and Monday morning I set that big old Turkey carcass in my biggest stock pot and let it boil all day. Usually when I make broth I freeze it, but Monday I decided that I was going to try something different. A couple of weeks ago I canned potatoes, it was my first attempt at using a pressure canner and since nothing blew up I figured I could give it another try. This is what I ended up with, and I am so proud!

12 pints of homemade turkey broth, ready to sit on my shelf and become dinner at some point.

As I mentioned before, I like canning because it give me the ability to control what is in my food without spending a fortune. I wanted to see what is in a store bought can of chicken broth, so I dug one up one lonely can and read the label.

It really as very few ingredients, there are some that I can’t pronounce and have no idea what they are. There is one big bad ingredient that I like to avoid completely and that would be Monosodium Glutamate, or also known as MSG. It isn’t good for our bodies, and a lot of people (including me) have sensitivities to it, there are some people who are very allergic to it. Cooking and preserving from scratch makes it possible for me to avoid all the unwanted ingredients. I know exactly what is in my broth: turkey; onions; garlic; salt; pepper; sage; thyme; and parsley.

Cooking and canning from scratch also gives me the flexibility to alter recipes to the tastes of my family. I know that the broth I made is going to be exactly how I like it with as much or as little salt as I want.

What kinds of things do you cook from scratch?