Baby Led Weaning

Growing healthy babies with healthy appetites

Recipe of the Week: Stock. Come ON, make yer own.

Click here to see what the guid folk of the forum said about stock…

And here’s how I do it. For chicken, do substitute roast bones of whatever.

1. If you have an extractor fan in the kitchen, for God’s sake switch it on. Stock is lovely, of course it is, but has a tendency to turn the house into a chicken-y sauna if you forget about it.

2. I think Nigella does a whole bit where she SAVES UP the bones of her roast chickens and does a stock from about six of them at a time. That’s what it’s like to be married to a bazillionaire, folks. I grab whatever is left on people’s plates (sooked or not, we’re family) and, having taken what meat is left off the carcass, whack it into a soup pot with a couple of bay leaves, a carrot, onion, coupla bits of garlic, stick of celery and an onion. Whether or not I bother to peel any of these things will depend on my mood. If I have leek tops unused I’ll stick them in too, they’d only get chucked otherwise.

3. Just cover with cold water, and add some peppercorns. Eight, if you want to be exact, which I do not.

4. Simmer for, oh I dunno, 40 mins? Some people like to do it for yonks but their extractor fans must be better than mine.Do remember to switch it off, it is hell on wheels to get out of a pan if you forget.

5. Let it cool and pour through a colander into a tupperware. DO NOT, as I have done too many times, get distracted and pour the liquid down the sink, while treating the smushy veg and bones as if they were the Crown Jewels.

6. Some people will go on about skimming any blech-y bits off the liquid as it cooks, which would be nice if you can be bothered. I can’t. I stick the tub in the fridge to cool and take excess fat (yellowy, gloopy schmaltz) off the next day with a spoon, putting it into an old non-recyclable in the bin.

And then I make soup. Or risotto. Or pilaff… or… *goes all chicken-dreamy*

P.S. If you are asking about veggie stock, allow yourself a moment’s well-deserved smugness and simply follow the same recipe while ignoring all mention of chicken, bones, carcasses and blech.

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12 Responses to “Recipe of the Week: Stock. Come ON, make yer own.”

  1. FOZzy says:

    Me = point 5!
    I did some in the slow cooker recently. probably a bit OTT looking back and the smell in the morning wasn’t croissants and coffee but I liked going to bed knowing I was doing something useful.

    • Aitch says:

      oh YES YES YES, I totally forgot about the slow cooker (having discarded mine thanks to a moment of madness where I melted the handle). That is the most cunning way to do chicken AND stock in my opinion. Slow cook ‘roast’ chook is the best, and then it’s just a matter of slinging it all back in, brilliant. Less saunarama and less washing up, superb.
      Any recos for a new SC, Foz? I was looking at the fancy ones where you can use them on the hob and in the oven for when I mess up timings (hence handle horror) but they don’t get great reviews on Amazon.

  2. Aitch says:

    I realise the ditching of the slow cooker sounds very un-eco. I did have a leather strap tied around it for a while, but it broke and the lid landed on my toe, which was… unpleasant *muffled swearing*. So I convinced myself that the element wasn’t working properly and ditched with clean green conscience.

  3. Aitch says:

    Sorry to bang on, but if you *waves at readers* were to use your slow cooker to do stock, fgs don’t leave it on all night. So long as it has come to a simmer, an hour will do it I reckon. (But then I am a wimp about leaving stuff on all night).

  4. FOZzy says:

    Good point.
    I would get a fancy one (mine is not that fancy). Definitely get one with a delay timer this is what mine misses. Starting on the hob sounds like a good thing…less washing up. A friend got one that is a rice cooker too.

  5. claire says:

    40 minutes. Really? I’ve always done mine for like 2 hours

    As for skimming, nope can’t be bothered either. Pop in the fridge & when you pour it into baggies to freeze (smug moi??!) then you can use a tea sieve thingy for any lingering yuckiness.

    In fact, I have some in the fridge awaiting risotto next week on my menu planner :o)

  6. Aitch says:

    Well obv do it for as long as you like/have, and certainly I’ve even read recipes that say 3-4 HOURS, but they are all chef-y and raw carcasses etc and more to the point they don’t have open-plan kitchen diners.
    I’d say 40 mins (after you have come slowly to the boil, maybe I should add that?) is the minimum to cook down the flavour from the celery and onion and to smush a carrot etc, and I’m always using roasted bones so they are well-cooked anyway. (the one thing I did observe when I used to do it for longer was that the bones went a bit revolting and gluey after too long).
    Soooooo, yup, I do it for about 40 mins or so and it is fine, I promise. Better than fine, delicious, and without making the entire building smell of poultry.

  7. Pipette says:

    Thanks for that – much sniggering at point number 5 :) If you have a mo, could you list a few top BLW recipes for using stock.
    Thank you

    • Aitch says:

      thanks! my stock answer? *more sniggering* erm, for me it’s risotto and soup, tbh. I don’t think I’m that adventurous stock-wise. *feels like a stock failure*

  8. Aitch says:

    oh, i see i also mentioned pilaff. that’s an old waitrose recipe that i keep in my head. will see if i can dig it out… ;-D

  9. Ives says:

    I’ve never used celery, onion or carrot, just the carcass. Does it make a lot of difference?

    • Aitch says:

      oh yes, i reckon it must. i mean celery, bay, carrot and onion is really a recipe for veg stock, isn’t it? so it’s double-bubble…

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