Once Thanksgiving passes, you’ll likely have a bounty’s worth of leftovers and scraps. But don’t discard those onion peelings and that chicken carcass yet!
All of those odds and ends can come together to make an incredibly rich, flavorful stock that not only serves as a wonderful base for all sorts of dishes, but also makes a soothing soup on its own. We love adding some paprika and red lentils to make a quick, hearty meal.
Stock is not only simple, but it’s also extremely flexible—it’s a great way to use leftovers veggies and herbs. Here’s what I typically work with as a base:
- One chicken carcass, meat picked over
- A few cloves of garlic
- A couple bay leaves
- A sprinkling of herbs (Thyme and parsley work best. Rosemary can get bitter as the stock simmers.)
- An onion, halved, with the root end intact. (Plus the peelings!)
- A carrot, or two
- A pinch of salt
I don’t use celery because I don’t care for its flavor, but many people do and some might argue that it’s a necessity. In the stock shown above, I also added a leek, split down the middle.
Once your pot is full, cover all of the ingredients with a generous amount of water and bring to a boil. Then, simmer over low heat for 2-3 hours (or even longer, if you like). Make sure to skim off any foam that congregates on the top.
After simmering, remove all the solid and strain the stock through cheesecloth or a fine mesh sieve. Let cool and then store however you like. We use a large Mason jar, stored in the fridge, but smaller plastic tubs work great and allow you to freeze the stock for a longer period of time.