It was a great party. Once the guests have gone, leftovers put away and dishes done, you plop down to prop up feet with a deep sigh, exhausted but happy. But then – oh no - what about that bird? Will you really have energy to do something with it tomorrow?
YES. Yes You Can.
This year don't let your Thanksgiving carcass be overlooked or discarded. In the pursuit of flavor, it’s just too valuable. Making stock is easy and fulfilling; a time-honored tradition that offers delicious results and feeds the soul. It just feels good to turn the last beauty of your bird into one more yummy bite.
A slow cooker works great, or a large stock pot. Cover bones with fresh, cold water, bring up to a slow boil, and simmer for a few hours (on low), along with some peppercorns and/or garlic.
this is a small slow cooker (3.5 qt.) - great for small spaces
If you are using a slow cooker, let the mix brew overnight. In the morning, remove bones if you need space and add in fresh vegetables liked chopped onion, carrot, and celery. This way you get the best out of the veggies without overcooking and risking a bitter result.
Reuse more food waste such as the greenery surrounding cauliflower, carrot peels, onion skins and celery bottoms; (freeze in bags until ready to make stock). Stay away from cruciferous veggies like broccoli and Brussels sprouts which can create a musty flavor.
A couple hours later, add in fresh herbs, like sprigs of parsley, rosemary or thyme, and cook on low an hour or so, again getting the best out of the herbs.
Turn off the heat and add in seasonings of choice: salt, pepper, lemon, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, etc. Let flavors meld for a half hour before straining. Season to taste. Cool completely. Label and store in refrigerator or freezer. I had two carcasses this week and got 10 Bell jars-worth of stock. The first 5 were super bone broth. I slow cooked a batch AFTER it was simmered on the stovetop and still got good flavor.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Wishing you a great Food Party!
- photos by LSIC