We probably all have that favourite “go to” homemade chicken soup recipe that’s been passed down the family line; it seems to make even our worse cold and flu symptoms almost bearable. The Bone Broth made from a chicken carcass, as in the case of our homemade chicken soup, has been a “tried, tested and true” remedy for our common illnesses for centuries. It not only provides us with a soothing, warming feeling but it also provides us with many important nutrients that will support our immunity, it hydrates us, it is easily digested and it helps to fight diarrhea. (1) No wonder it makes us feel so much better when we’re suffering from a cold or flu.
A Versatile Base For Many Recipes
Bone Broth is delicious! It can be enjoyed all on its own or used as a base for many recipes including chicken soup, vegetable soup, a delicious chilli or a hearty stew. It can be easily prepared in a large stockpot on the stove or slowly simmered for hours in a Crock Pot, the preparation time and complexity of the recipe is really up to you. Its versatility makes it a perfect snack, remedy, lunch or dinner choice suitable for a solo person or a hungry crowd.
You can prepare your broth from the remnants of a recently cooked meal, a frozen carcass or from bones purchased at your local butcher. If preparing from cooked remnants simply place them in enough water to just cover the bone, add a splash of apple cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice and allow it to stand for about 30 minutes. If preparing on the stovetop bring it to a boil, remove any impurities that settled to the top, reduce heat and let simmer for an extended period of time. For chicken I generally let it simmer for 6-10 hours (but you can choose to simmer as long as 48 hours) and for beef 12-14 hours (but you can choose to simmer as long as 72 hours); the longer it is allowed to simmer the better it will be.
The length of simmering time needed makes this a perfect Crock Pot recipe; you can follow the same steps as you would with the stovetop method, turn on low and forget it! And if you forget to remove the impurities that settled on the top, it’s fine; you can remove it after it has been allowed to cool.
After you have simmered it for your preferred amount of time allow it to cool for a bit then remove and discard all bones (be especially careful with chicken and turkey carcass that may have very small bone pieces). You can choose to use the broth right away as the base of your chosen recipe or it can be kept refrigerated for up to 5 days or in the freezer for a few months to be used later. You will notice that once refrigerated the fat will settle at the top, this can be scraped off and is perfect to use as a gravy base. You may also notice that the cooled broth has gelled, this is expected and a sign that there is sufficient gelatin present.
A Few Things To Consider When Selecting The Bones
Whether your preference is a chicken or turkey carcass, beef bones or another variety such as venison or lamb it’s important to always source the bones from pastured, antibiotic and hormone free animals. Not all bones are created equally; those from commercially raised animals will expose you to more of the toxins that wreak havoc on our health.
All The Goodness You Can Expect From The Bone
Incorporating more bone broth recipes into your meal planning will allow you to benefit from all of the “goodness” the bones have to offer. The Bones, when simmered over several hours will leach many important nutrients including bone marrow, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and important amino acids like Proline, Glycine and Gelatin. These important nutrients are important for healthy blood cells and immune development, healthy skin and nails, digestive health, wound healing, healthy bones, joints, ligaments and tendons as well as supressing inflammation and calming an overactive immune system. (1)