Good Broth can resurrect the dead– South American Proverb
Up until this year I hadn’t dreamt of making bone broth, much less consuming it.
When we butchered & processed 27 meat chickens this past April, I specifically requested that I get to keep the necks & random boney/cartilage parts for broth making. I didn’t keep the heads or the feet, as that was a little bit beyond my level of crunchiness at the time. I’ve changed since and have adapted the “waste not, want not” mentality.
Homemade is so easy, cheap, and much healthier than the store bought versions. You get to vote what goes in it. Or doesn’t- like sodium. The better quality ingredients you use, the better resulting broth. Better ingredients = a richer, soothing, healing broth.
So why is broth so special? Because it has minerals that are easily absorbed when in liquid form. Minerals like silicon and magnesium. When you cook it down, you get all the goodies like glucosamine & chondroitin from various animal parts. It’s good for your body, lining of your stomach, and even your joints!
I know, it sounds a little gross. And kind of far fetched, BUT our grandparents drank it to cure their colds & flu with success- so I’m in. Plus anything to avoid giving my hard-earned money to greedy corporations that doesn’t even produce food the right way is ok with me!
Homemade Chicken Bone Broth
What you’ll need:
- Bones/Carcass of 1 chicken OR lots of heads, feet & miscellaneous boney parts. You can even save your leftover bones from dinner in the freezer until you have enough saved up for broth making.
- Crock pot
- Filtered water- amount depends on the size of your crock pot
- Celery, Carrots, Onions, Garlic, Parsley, Bay Leaf, veggie scraps- Whatever floats your boat- I use organic & from our garden when I can.
- 1/4 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar (must use this as it leaches all the minerals out of the bones- it’s a good thing & you won’t taste it at all)
What to do with it all:
Combine all ingredients into your crock pot, and cover chicken/veggies with filtered water, set to low. Let it bubble & do it’s thing for at least 24 hours, 48-72 for optimum results. Just make sure it always has plenty of water- you don’t want a mess of burnt chicken carcass in your crock pot. The bones should be very brittle & break very easily by the time it’s done. And you’re house will smell of yummy chicken soup.
Once it’s done, let it cool & strain the liquid from the solids. You’re looking for a dark liquid free of debris. I use a colander with a designated dishtowel (disclaimer- it may stain). Then throw your leftover carcass out.
You have several options when it comes to storing your bone broth. After I have filtered the liquid from the solids, I normally pour half of it (with a funnel) into glass jars & then move them to the deep freeze. The other half I like to pour into ice cube trays & freeze. Once frozen, I pop them out & into ziplock bags to keep in the freezer. I really like this option because I can very easily pop a few into meals for an extra pop of flavor & punch of nutrition. You can “can” it too, but I haven’t yet tried that myself. Not wanting to store it long term?- then pour into a mason jar & store it in the fridge. It should keep for a few weeks. Don’t be alarmed if some fat accumulates at the top- fat is good!
So that’s it. I use it when cooking, warmed in a mug to treat upset stomach, sniffle-y noses, & sore throats. And my husband likes it, a lot. When we butcher more meat chickens after Thanksgiving, I’ll be keeping the feet & heads this time 🙂
While I can’t promise it’s ability to resurrect, it’s pretty amazing stuff.
Pictures of the broth making process:
Frozen necks & other boney parts
Add your veggies, ACV, and water
It’ll look like this after 12 hours or so
The finished product
Want to know more about the nutritional & historical aspects of broth? You can read more here:
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