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Stocks

Chicken Stock

1 whole free-range chicken or 2 to 3 pounds of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones and wings*
gizzards from one chicken (optional)
2-4 chicken feet (optional)
4 quarts cold filtered water
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
1 bunch parsley

*Note: Farm-raised, free-range chickens give the best results. Many battery-raised chickens will not produce stock that gels.

If you are using a whole chicken, cut off the wings and remove the neck, fat glands and the gizzards from the cavity. Cut chicken parts into several pieces. (If you are using a whole chicken, remove the neck and wings and cut them into several pieces.) Place chicken or chicken pieces in a large stainless steel pot with water, vinegar and all vegetables except parsley. Let stand 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bring to a boil, and remove scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 to 8 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the richer and more flavorful it will be. About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.

Remove whole chicken or pieces with a slotted spoon. If you are using a whole chicken, let cool and remove chicken meat from the carcass. Reserve for other uses, such as chicken salads, enchiladas, sandwiches or curries. Strain the stock into a large bowl and reserve in your refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off this fat and reserve the stock in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer.

 

Beef Stock

about 4 pounds beef marrow and knuckle bones
1 calves foot, cut into pieces (optional)
3 pounds meaty rib or neck bones
4 or more quarts cold filtered water
1/2 cup vinegar
3 onions, coarsely chopped
3 carrots, coarsely chopped
3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
several sprigs of fresh thyme, tied together
1 teaspoon dried green peppercorns, crushed
l bunch parsley

Place the knuckle and marrow bones and optional calves foot in a very large pot with vinegar and cover with water. Let stand for one hour. Meanwhile, place the meaty bones in a roasting pan and brown at 350 degrees in the oven. When well browned, add to the pot along with the vegetables. Pour the fat out of the roasting pan, add cold water to the pan, set over a high flame and bring to a boil, stirring with a wooden spoon to loosen up coagulated juices. Add this liquid to the pot. Add additional water, if necessary, to cover the bones; but the liquid should come no higher than within one inch of the rim of the pot, as the volume expands slightly during cooking. Bring to a boil. A large amount of scum will come to the top, and it is important to remove this with a spoon. After you have skimmed, reduce heat and add the thyme and crushed peppercorns.

Simmer stock for at least 12 and as long as 72 hours. Just before finishing, add the parsley and simmer another 10 minutes. You will now have a pot of rather repulsive-looking brown liquid containing globs of gelatinous and fatty material. It doesn’t even smell particularly good. But don’t despair. After straining you will have a delicious and nourishing clear broth.

Remove bones with tongs or a slotted spoon. Strain the stock into a large bowl. Let cool in the refrigerator and remove the congealed fat that rises to the top. Transfer to smaller containers and to the freezer for long-term storage.

 

Fish Stock

3 or 4 whole carcasses, including heads, of non-oily fish such as sole, turbot, rockfish or snapper
2 tablespoons butter
2 onions, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, coarsely chopped
several sprigs fresh thyme
several sprigs parsley
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
1/4 cup vinegar
about 3 quarts cold filtered water

Ideally, fish stock is made from the bones of sole or turbot. In Europe, you can buy these fish on the bone. The fish monger skins and filets the fish for you, giving you the filets for your evening meal and the bones for making the stock and final sauce. Unfortunately, in America sole arrives at the fish market preboned. But snapper, rock fish and other non-oily fish work equally well; and a good fish merchant will save the carcasses for you if you ask him. As he normally throws these carcasses away, he shouldn’t charge you for them. Be sure to take the heads as well as the body—these are especially rich in iodine and fat-soluble vitamins. Classic cooking texts advise against using oily fish such as salmon for making broth, probably because highly unsaturated fish oils become rancid during the long cooking process.

Melt butter in a large stainless steel pot. Add the vegetables and cook very gently, about 1/2 hour, until they are soft. Add wine and bring to a boil. Add the fish carcasses and cover with cold, filtered water. Add vinegar. Bring to a boil and skim off the scum and impurities as they rise to the top. Tie herbs together and add to the pot. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for at least 4 hours or as long as 24 hours. Remove carcasses with tongs or a slotted spoon and strain the liquid into pint-sized storage containers for refrigerator or freezer. Chill well in the refrigerator and remove any congealed fat before transferring to the freezer for long-term storage.

* Recipes are from the book, Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon

Fermented Foods

Cultured Salsa

4 medium tomatoes, about 2 pounds total

2 small onions, finely chopped

1-2 bell peppers, seeded

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded (or not if you prefer more spice)

1 bunch coriander

juice of 2 lemons

1 tablespoon sea salt

4 tablespoons whey (if not available, use an additional 1 tablespoon salt)

1/4 cup filtered water

1.If you prefer peeled tomatoes: score the bottoms, drop into boiling water for about 15 seconds, remove and place in ice water. The peels should come off easily.

2. Chop all ingredients by hand or with a food processor to desired consistency. Mix and place in a very clean quart-sized, wide mouth mason jar. Press down with a wooden spoon, adding more water to cover the vegetables. Be sure to leave 2.5-5cm head space to allow for expansion.

3. Cover tightly and keep at room temperature for 2-3 days before transferring to cold storage.

 

Cortido (Latin American Sauerkraut)

1 large cabbage, cored and shredded

1 cup carrots, grated

2 medium onions, quartered lengthwise and very finely sliced

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon sea salt

4 tablespoons whey (if not available, use an additional 1 tablespoon salt)

1. Cover tightly and keep at room temperature for 2-3 days before transferring to cold storage.

2. Pound with a wooden pounder or a meat hammer for about 10 minutes to release juices.

3. Place in 2 quart-sized, wide mouth mason jars and press down firmly with a pounder or meat hammer until juices come to the top of the cabbage. The top of the cabbage mixture should be at least 2.5cm below the top of the jars.

4. Cover tightly and keep at room temperature for about 3 days before transferring to cold storage.

 

Garlic-Dill Cucumber Pickles

4-5 pickling cucumbers or 15-20 gherkins

2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

2 tablespoons fresh dill, snipped

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon sea salt

4 tablespoons whey (if not available, use an additional 1 tablespoon salt)

1-2 clean grape or oak leaves

1 cup filtered water

1. Wash cucumbers well and place in a quart-sized wide mouth jar.

2. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over cucumbers, adding more water if necessary to cover the cucumbers. The top of the liquid should be at least 2.5cm below the top of the jar.

3. Cover tightly and keep and keep at room temperature for about 3 days before transferring to cold storage.
Recipes adapted from the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. To read about Lacto-fermentation click HERE.