You can make stock from any combination of meat and bones.
- You can start with a whole uncooked chicken. Check inside the body cavity to make sure there is no plastic or paper wrapping the gizzards. You can leave the gizzards themselves inside the cavity.
- OR I sometimes use the carcass of a chicken that I have roasted and eaten. Put all the leftover bits, bones, skin, pan drippings into a stock pot or large saucepan.
- OR if you eat steak with bones, save the bones in the freezer until you have enough to make a pot of stock.
- OR ask your butcher for beef stock bones. You will get marrow bones and bones which don’t have much other uses. A large bag is pretty cheap. If you buy uncooked stock bones, roast them in a 350 degree oven until browned. It makes the flavor of the stock much better.
- OR you can use the bones from any animal, venison, turkey, grass-fed pork, fish. All are delicious and so good for you.
- Take whatever bones you are going to use (either chicken or beef, but not both together) and put them in a large saucepan, stock pot or crock pot. Cover with water and bring to a good boil. If scum comes to the top, skim it off with a spoon.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 24 hours, or more. I usually leave them 48 hours. A crock pot is very useful for this, but it can be done stovetop. Check occassionally to see if you need to add more water to keep the bones covered.
- After 24 hours (or 48, or whatever), turn the heat off and allow to cool for a while.
- Place a collander over a large bowl. Drain the stock through the collander.
- If you started with a whole chicken, you can now separate the meat from the bones and skin. I make three piles: meat to eat; skin and gelatinous bits for the dogs, and bones to throw away. The meat can be used in soups, on salads, or made into chicken salad. If you have more than you need right now, you can freeze it.
- I store my stock in mason jars. It lasts a few days in the fridge. I usually put most of it in the freezer. If it's completely cool, and you promise to never heat it in the plastic, you can also use old quart sized yogurt containers. There are chemicals in the plastic that can leach out if heated, so only use for cold storage.