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Mar 14, 2007 05:24 PM

Stoopid (sic) question(s) re: broth/stock

Question 1: how do you define the difference between broth and stock

Question 2: after talking with someone who thought I was nuts, I have to ask you all: is making chicken stock with a rotisserie chicken (that is, a chicken that has already been cooked) a mistake? (The friend who thought I was nuts said: the purpose of cooking with the chicken is to bring everything out of the chicken; the rotisserie process already did that so at best you're flavoring the broth, you aren't really making stock).

Thanks for your patience; I'm burgeoning, but I'm still very much a rookie.

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  1. People make stock with the carcass of the roasted chichen all the time and with some value added things like some other bony bits like wings or necks you can make a useful tasty stock. I would "harvest" the meat first for however you use roast chicken.

    As to Question #1 my understanding that broth is a light simmering of the meat and aroomatics in water, while stock is the intense multi houred process to extract all the usefulness from the bones etc. Plus if you have anuf ofthe right raw materials it will result in a lovely gelatin when cooled.

    1. Broth is a thin soup with any bits in, ready to consume if you have a cold.

      Stock is the careful preparation of a clear, richly flavored liquid that serves as a base for many other dishes. Stock usually starts with a sofrito of carrots, onion, and celery to which is added roasted bones of beef, chicken, or turkey (or unroasted fish bones). All are simmered slowly while any foam is removed (albeit fish stock is quickly finished). One can use tricks like beaten egg whites to remove scum and other impurities. The goal for stock is to get liquids that look like different light rums or whiskeys--clear, lighly colored--and have unmistakeable fragrance that is the essence of the beef. fish, chicken, or whatever.

      Your rotisserie chicken bones and any cling on bits would have been just fine for making a stock. You could have even roasted the bones a bit more.

      1. I make great stock from the skeletal remains of Costco roasted cickens. I remove all of the skin and meat first then freeze sveral of them. When I'm ready to make stock I roast the carcasses at 400 degress till they turn a golden/mahagony color. I add 8 cups of cold water per carcass and reduce slowly by half. Don't let it boil, it gets cloudy. It makes great gelatenous stock. If I want a double stock, I use low sodium chicken stock instead of water. No aromatics no fuss.

        1. I personally don't like the flavor of stock from cooked chicken or turkey carcass for most chicken broths or soup. It just doesn't have the clarity and umami, and that real to-die-for chicken flavor, to qualify for a great stock. I prefer to use a whole raw chicken, which I cut up, roughly, toss in with a mirapoix, also cut up roughly. I toss the meat afterwards - I know that some folks will pull the meat out after a relatively short time (e.g. the first 30 minutes), then reuse it for the soup later. I think the flavor is weak unless you sacrifice the whole raw bird - leave it in there until it's given its all and is mushy and tasteless. Strain the stock well, and keep in the fridge or use right away.

          You can thin this down and drink as a broth, or you can make a hearty chicken soup by adding diced fresh mirapoix and bringing to a boil, then add noodles, rice, tortillas or a nice matzohball. Then, (and this is where the Costco Rotisserie chicken comes in), add the meat you tear off the separately roasted chicken.

          I have used the cooked carcass for very robust, complex soups - like ramen broth. I've mix the cooked carcass stock with pork stock and dashi, and it's turned out ok - but it's even better when that is mixed once again with the regular (raw) chicken stock. There really is something about the umami - the ultimate depth in flavor - that you can only get from using the whole raw bird - all the meat, wings, et al.

          1. I save the carcasses from all my roast chickens and also the bones when I make other chicken dishes. I keep them all in the freezer until I have a good pile, and then I use them to make stock. If I happen to find them in the store, a bag of frozen (or fresh) raw wings is a good addition, and cheap.