Chicken stock (from the carcass only)
I noticed Delia has a stock recipe that calls for giblets, but my local store doesn't do them with their free-range chucks, so here's my recipe - I use last week's chicken carcass to make the following week's gravy.
MethodOnce you've used all the meat and skin off your roast chicken, you should be left with the stripped carcass, wing tips, and maybe a few bits and bobs of skin. Get a stock pot, or a good big heavy saucepan, and add about 1.5 litres of water, and add the chopped onion, chopped celery, and around 1/2 teaspoon of dried herbs - choose your preferred herbs, those happen to be mine and are a good starting point. It's uneccesary to use pricey fresh herbs, this is a great use for the dried version. Then, crack the largest bones in the chicken where they thicken near the joint at each end to release the marrow - this will really make a difference to the stock, compared with leaving the bones intact. I use a pair of clean bolt-cutters I keep specifically for this purpose, and if you do that, make sure there's absolutely no machine oil or grease on the cutters first, and that they're immaculately clean, and add them to the wash right afterwards. It's slippery work, so whatever tool you use, keep a clean cloth or piece of kitchen towel handy to de-grease your hands as often as needed. Make sure to break the main carcass along the spine in several places to release the strip of marrow that runs on each side of the spine, which is dark-reddish brown. Add all the carcass pieces and bring the water to a rolling boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and allow it to simmer for at least 2 hours, keeping an eye on it to ensure it doesn't dry out. You can reduce the stock to the concentration you prefer by simmering it for longer, then pour it through a large sieve into a heatproof container. I prefer to let it cool slightly before I skim off the paler scum that forms on the top, and it will set to a semi-jelid state, which turns to liquid again when it's heated.
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