Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Chicken Stock Revisted

Tried making chicken stock again. It came out much better this time. I didn't have enough bones for the amount of water I used. The flavor of this is nicer, plus the end product wasn't ruined with mysterious freezer gel pac goo. I think I got a little over a quart out of the bones from two chickens.

Two, boneless skinless breast were dinner last night.
Thighs and wings went on the grill tonight.
Two, boneless skinless breast went into the freezer for a dinner withing a week.
The wings are adding up, I'll have to have a Buffalo wing dinner soon.
Fat from 4 birds is frozen to get fat for Thanksgiving.
The livers are going to be used in a Thanksgiving pate.

Total usage. My new mantra.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

When Good Stock Goes Bad

After viewing the Mike Pardus demo on breaking down a chicken, I stopped buying chicken parts and started buying whole chickens. Costs less, better quality and you get more for the buck. I have broken down two chickens so far. From them I made two dinners using boneless breast, one dinner of grilled thighs and drumsticks, some frozen wings, a frozen liver(one chicken didn't come with a liver), frozen fat, and a lot of frozen bones.

Well, this morning I took the bones out of the freezer and roasted them. Then they went into a pot and got covered with Brita filtered water. Brought it to a boil and started skimming. Moved the pot into a low oven. It was apparently too low so it got bumped up later -Note to self: get an oven thermometer. Then I added diced carrots, celery and onion and continued cooking for another hour. Strained it through a colander. Strained it through a fine mesh sieve - I thought I had cheese cloth but apparently not. Then began chilling it. I had a clean bottle that I filled with water and froze. I put it to cool the stock. It brought it down to about 80 degrees. So I filled a ziplock with all the ice I had and in it went. It was still a little warm.

I was about to take the kids out, so I grabbed an ice pack out of the freezer, cleaned it, dropped it in and moved everything to the fridge. That was dumb. Super dumb. I had a leak. So some amount of non-toxic freeze bag gel made its way into my beautiful stock.

I dumped it down the drain. It was very depressing. (insert deep shoulder slumping sigh here)

From the few tastes I had, it was pretty good stock. I probably should have used a little less water. Maybe kept the mirepoix in a little longer. Damn I wanted that stock.

Grocery shopping is tomorrow. Guess I'll get a chicken and start over.

It's all in the details. Hope I don't screw up the schmaltz. I'm counting on that for Thanksgiving.

Wylie Coyote: Super Genius

Saw this on my favorite blog, The Hunger Artist. I'll try not to let it get to my head after one post, but genius is a nice word to throw around.

blog readability test

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Hello, and welcome.

Never thought I'd have a blog. I started following a few last week. They had links to other blogs. And now I stay up way too late reading blogs. Mostly blogs about food.

I don't really have any idea what I'll be blogging about, but some topics/events that may find their way here in the near future are the new sausage stuffer I recently got, BBQ, and the cows I co-own. The beef is great, but here's a piece of advice: If your father-in-law asks you if you want to go in on some cows, run it by your wife before you say yes.

Hopefully, with a little time, this might be a decent spot to see a post.