I owe this stock to Bruce Sherman, the chef of North Pond in Chicago. Not necessarily the recipe, but the technique. He was classically trained by the French, and thus a total stickler for “by-the-book” cooking. He really made me appreciate how the most miniscule of details can affect how a dish tastes in the end. When It comes to making a good stock you really have to pay attention to the details, after all you are working with a limited amount of ingredients.
2 lbs Chicken Backs or Wings
2 Tbsps Vegetable Oil
2 Medium Carrots, medium diced
2 Stalks of Celery, medium diced
1 Medium Onion, medium diced
1 Clove of Garlic, chopped
½ Cup White Wine
5 Whole Peppercorns
2 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme
1 Bay Leaf
3-4 Fresh Parsley Stems
• With a heavy knife, or the aid of your butcher, chop the chicken backs or wings into ½ inch pieces.
• Heat a 4 quart pot over high heat. Add the oil and begin browning the chopped up chicken bones. Be sure not to crowd the pan. Allow each piece to brown completely. Stir occasionally. The more dark brown you allow them to become the darker your stock will be in the end.
• Remove the bones as they brown and more room is needed in the pan.
• After all the bones are browned and removed add the onion, celery, and carrots. Stir occasionally, allowing the vegetables to caramelize.
• Add the garlic and stir for about a minute.
• Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Be sure to scrape all of the pan drippings off the bottom of the pan. Reduce the wine until pan is dry.
• Add the peppercorns and herbs and reserved bones. Cover the bones with water. Add enough liquid to cover the bones by an inch.
• Bring the pot to a boil and skim the fat from the surface. Turn the heat down to a simmer and occasionally skim the impurities from the surface as they collect at the top.
• Simmer the stock for 1 hour, being sure not to let the level of the liquid drop below the bones. If it does, just add a bit more water.
• After the simmering is done, strain the stock through a mesh sieve and allow the excess fat to rise to the top. Skim the fat and use the stock in your favorite recipe or freeze for up to 6 months.