Grocery shopping yesterday I stumbled across bulk packed chicken leg quarters on sale for 37 cents a pound. It was clearly a sign that I needed to make stock again. I never knew omens came in the form of semi-frozen chicken parts, but you take what you can get. I bought two packs, 12 pounds of leg quarters, for a total of $4.46. I had to retrace my route through the store to add the rest of my stock making materials, but what the hell. This was too good to pass up.
Luckily, I brew. I repurposed the 32qt brew kettle that I use for brewing inside. There's no way a standard (non-restaurant) stock pot would hold enough. So, 12 pounds of chicken leg quarters, 5 pounds of onions and leeks, 3 pounds of carrots, a large bunch of celery (2.5lbs or so), six or seven cloves of garlic, a fistful of peppercorns and a couple of bay leaves went into the pot with 5 gallons of water, which brought everything up to the 7gallon mark on the pot. Actually, the chicken went in first and was brought to a boil so I could skim off most of the scum without having to fight my way through the vegetables. Then everything else went in. Held at about 190° for most of the evening. I topped it off before I went to bed last night and let it simmer overnight.
After removing the solids I had about four and a half gallons of rich stock reducing on my stove this morning. The house smells glorious. It's not as clear as I'd like but I'll strain it again after it's cool. I have a Rapi-Kool ice paddle
, but I tried something I've been thinking about for a while -- using my immersion chiller to cool the stock. It's nice when hobbies intersect
It worked perfectly. The combination of ice paddle and immersion chiller took about 3.5 gallons of reduced stock from a boil to a refrigerator-friendly 60° in 20 minutes. I'm definitely doing that again. Makes me wonder if I could use Whirlfloc in my stock to clarify it