Want to know chicken stock cooking hints and tips, here is the detail description step by step. Follow the instruction to make delicious chicken stock at home.
When buying chicken, look for pieces with flesh that looks light pink and moist and is free of blemishes and bruises.
Free-range and corn-fed chickens are available from specialty poultry shops and, while generally smaller and more expensive, tend to have a better flavor and texture than intensively farmed chickens.
Chicken stock cooking hints
Whole chicken are sold by a number which relates to their weight. For example, a No. 14 chicken weighs 1.5kg, and so on. As a general rule, a No. 15 chicken will serve 4 people.
Try to buy chicken last when you are out shopping to minimize the amount of time it is out of the refrigerator. If you are buying a frozen chicken, make sure it is frozen solid and tightly wrapped.
If it has even slightly defrosted, do not try to refreeze it as this can promote the growth of harmful bacteria. Continue to defrost it on a tray on the bottom shelf of the refrigeration where it cannot drip onto any other foods.
Thawed chicken should be cooked within 12 hours and must never be refrozen.
Fresh chicken should be taken out of its packaging, covered loosely with foil or plastic wrap and kept on a plate in the bottom of the refrigerator where it cannot drip onto any other food.
Fresh chicken should be used within 2 days, or, alternatively, frozen for up to 8-12 months. When freezing, be sure to expel all the air form the freezer bag before sealing.
- 1 kg-13 hours
- 1.5 kg-15 hours
- 2 kg-17 hours
- 2.5 kg-20 hours
- 3 kg-24 hours
- 3.5 kg-28 hours
Whole chickens should be defrosted in the refrigerator. Chicken pieces can be defrosted in the microwave (with the thickest portions to the outside of the plate), but don’t defrost whole chickens in the microwave, as they will defrost unevenly and some parts may start to cook while others remain frozen.
Never defrost chicken at room temperature and never thaw under running water. Bacteria such as salmonella can be activated if a defrosting chicken gets too warm. And it must be fully thawed before cooking begins. Of course, you can also buy pre-cooked barbecue or chargrilled chicken.
Chicken Stock Cooking Hints
There is plenty of good-quality ready- made chicken stocks or stocks cubes available and chicken consommé can usually be used as a substitute. However, nothing really beats the flavor of a homemade stock.
Chicken bones can be bought from a butcher or chicken shop and the neck and giblets of roasting chickens can be added as well. You can also use chicken wings.
To make chicken stock, put 2 kg chicken bones or wings, 2 quartered unpeeled onions, 2 chopped unpeeled carrots, 2 chopped celery sticks including leaves and 3.5 liters of water in a large saucepan. Bring slowly to the boil.
Skim any scum off the surface as required and add 1 bouquet garni (a bay leaf and sprigs of parsley, thyme and marjoram tied together with string) and 12 black peppercorns. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for 3 hours, skimming the surface regularly.
Ladle the stock in batches into a fine sieve sitting over a bowl. Gently press the solids with the ladle to extract all the liquid. Let the stock cool, then refrigerate until cold and spoon off any fat from the top.
At this stage you can reduce the stock to concentrate its flavour (dilute before using) and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 8-12 months. Makes 2.5 litres.
There are few things more irritating or wasteful than using a tablespoon of herbs or tomato paste in a recipe and having to throw the rest away unused.
If you only need a small amount, you can freeze the rest in small, convenient portions to be uses at a later date.
Freezing stock – Put a freezer bag not a measuring jug and pour the stock into the bag to get 1 cup (250 ml) stock. Seal tightly and freeze.
Leftover herbs – Finely chop any leftover herbs and wrap 1 tablespoon measurements in plastic wrap. Seal and freeze.
Breadcrumbs – When a recipe asks for fresh breadcrumbs, make extra and put the leftovers in freezer bags. Make sure all the air is expelled and seal tightly. Label with a date and the quantity.
Ginger – Fresh ginger can be kept wrapped in foil in the refrigerator or, for longer storage, cut into small pieces, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and frozen.
Tomato paste – Spoon tomato paste into clean ice-cube trays and freeze. Once frozen, store in freezer bags for later use.
Fresh herbs – Herbs such as chives, parsley, mint, basil and coriander grow very easily in the garden or in pots on the kitchen window sill. Simply pick them as you need them.
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