Sunday, April 1, 2012

Roasted Chicken and Bone Broth

One little chicken took up a lot of my day today.

A couple of weekends ago, I purchased a whole, free-range chicken raised without antibiotics or hormones from the Livestock First Ranch booth at the Coppell Farmers Market (along with two dozen delicious eggs). It came frozen and vacuum-sealed. Today, I thawed it, roasted it and then made stock (or bone broth) from the bones.

Bone broth is one of the paleo super foods. It's incredibly nutrient dense and is an immense help in aiding digestion (read more health benefits details here). It also adds a ton of flavor to soups, sauces and just about anything else you put it in.

Here's how I roasted the chicken:

First, I thawed it. Slowly. In a large pot of cold water for a couple of hours. (Ideally, you'd want to thaw it by transferring it from the freezer to the fridge for a day or so to thaw, but I'm impatient, so I did it this way.)

When it was nearly thawed, I chopped up some green onions (they're milder than white onions ... they're also all I had at home), smashed some garlic and sliced a lemon.



I removed the chicken from the vacuum-sealed package, patted it dry and plopped it in my beautiful blue dutch oven. Then added the above ingredients along with lots of black pepper and some rosemary. I also stuffed some butter between the meat and the skin—because butter makes everything better.


If I'd had some twine, I would've closed it's little legs. I put the lid on the dutch oven and cooked it in a 375^ oven for a few hours. I basted it once. I always cut into the deepest part of the breast to make sure it's finished cooking.

Ta da:


I let it cool a bit, then removed the meat from the bones and put the meat in the fridge. I'll use it later in the week for chicken salad or just reheat it with a sweet potato or something for dinner.

Now comes the fun part. Bone broth!

I returned all the bones from the bird to the dutch oven. Added some celery and more onions for flavor and some spinach for some vitamins. I brought this to a boil then turned it down to a low simmer for about 6 hours.


After the six hours, I removed all the bones and veggies and strained the remaining broth with a fine strainer. Then placed it in smaller containers and moved it to the fridge/freezer immediately. (This is also when I added the salt, at the end. (It's easier to add more at the end than it is to remove too much used at the beginning.)



I used some of the broth in my good friend Reena's famous Chicken Tikka recipe. (This pic is about halfway through the cooking process. Sorry I didn't take one of the final product.)







I also made this tonight (totally unrelated, but it's pretty):



So, here's to the chicken. And the egg. And to your good health,

Allison

4 comments:

  1. How much was the chicken & the eggs at the Farmer's Market? I used to go to Coppell every Saturday, but I've never been brave enough to buy protein.

    The stock looks delish! Can't wait to make my own, but I need a bigger freezer first. :)

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  2. I can't remember the individual prices. With tax, I think I paid $18 for the chicken and the eggs together. I need a bigger freezer too!

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  3. Ahh a shout out! Roast chicken is so versatile. Did you notice a difference in taste since it was free-range?

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  4. The flavor was really good, but I packed it so full of garlic, lemon and rosemary that I didn't notice a big difference. THE EGGS, however, have a massively better taste over regular eggs. The yolks are even more golden.

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