Monday, March 12, 2012

Chicken Stew

Growing up I always remember my mom boiling the chicken bones for soup and while my chicken stew is very different from the soup I remember it is definitely inspired by it.  Like my chili it this chicken stew is never exactly the same and is the product of whatever we happen to have in our fridge at the time of stew making! However it turns out it definitely hardy and makes for as yummy meal in the cooler evenings and I love how it is chock full of veggies for the kids.  J  Cooking this always feels a bit like you are constantly starting and stopping but given there are no hard cooking times I always found this easy to make around nap or “quiet” time.

What you will need:
  • 1 chicken or turkey carcass
  • 1 chopped up potato
  • 1 large handful of uncooked rice
  • 1 large handful of lentils
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 2 large chopped carrots
  • Other veggies! (I’ve added celery, broccoli and others in the past, basically a product of what food we happen to have in our fridge)
  • Salt and pepper to taste and perhaps a bit of readymade stock powder if it is not as tasty as you were hoping

Pick any leftover meat off your cooked whole chicken or turkey and boil the rest in the crockpot for around 3 or 4 hours, I usually start with around 6 cups of water, potentially a bit more depending on how big your original bird was.    Drain the liquid into a bowl and stick into the fridge overnight and skim off the fat in the morning to create your stock.  In the meantime pick any other meat off the bones and set aside.  Once you have the stock ready put that into the crock pot  and chop and toss in any of the meat you have been able to salvage.  Throw in the potato, rice, lentils and veggies and cook for 3 or 4 hours in your crockpot stirring every few hours and adding a bit of water if it seems too dry.  We usually serve with fresh bread made from our break machine.  It should make a hardy and tasty meal but in the event your stew is not as tasty as you were hoping add a tablespoon or two of readymade stock powder and that should make the difference. 

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