I don’t throw a lot of food out. It probably has much to do with how I was raised. I feel terrible when I throw out a moldy piece of cheese (especially if I paid quite a bit for it) or produce that is looking less than prime. This recipe is my best attempt to use up every last bit of chicken from a whole roasted chicken. After carving, I save the carcass (horrible sounding word, I know) and freeze it and then after I have accumulated a few of the above mentioned carcasses (there it is again!), I make homemade stock. I also freeze leftover fresh herbs like thyme, dill, and sage and throw them into this recipe.
Of course, I still buy the “stock in a box”(Rachael Ray terminology!) but this is nice to have on hand in the freezer since I use stock in many recipes. (Think soups, stews, etc). I think the flavor is much richer if you make it yourself.
I used the stock to make a delicious chicken and wild rice soup (an original recipe!). The recipe is below…
Homemade Chicken Stock
- 3 to 4 carcasses from leftover roasted chicken
- 2 large onions, peeled, quartered
- 3 carrots, peeled, cut into large chunks
- 2 celery stalks, peeled, cut into large chunks
- 2 parsnips, peeled, cut into large chunks
- 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 10 sprigs of fresh parsley
- 10 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 10 sprigs of fresh sage
- 10 sprigs of fresh dill
- 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
Place the above ingredients in a 16 to 20 quart stockpot. Add enough water to cover the top. Bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 2 to 3 hours. Strain the entire contents of the pot through a colander and discard the solids. Chill the stock overnight. The next day, remove the surface fat. (a little gross but it’s necessary!) Refrigerate and use immediately or pack in freezer safe containers and freeze for up to 3 months.
Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 stalks of celery, diced
- 1 parsnip, peeled and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- salt and pepper
- 4 cups of chicken stock
- 2 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup cooked wild rice
- 2 cups cooked chicken breast, diced
- fresh parsley to garnish
Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, carrots, celery, parsnips, thyme, salt and pepper. Saute for ten minutes until vegetables are tender. Add chicken stock, raise heat, and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes, reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the pot. After ten minutes, or after potatoes are tender, add cooked rice and cooked chicken and combine till heated through. Add fresh chopped parsley as a garnish.
Note: The soup does saturate all the liquid by the next day so if you want to reheat, you may want to add some water or chicken stock.