I often roast up chickens for mid-week dinner. It’s dead simple, and there’s usually left-overs for salad the next day. The bones are also perfect for making a bone broth that can be added to other dishes, or just eaten as is.
No matter what you do with it, bone broth should be considered a staple in your diet. It’s full of minerals such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. It also contains gelatin and collagen, which are great for the skin and joints.
It’s used to treat adrenal fatigue, to help heal the gut in those with a poor diet, and it contains glycine, which helps promote muscle repair. As my little one says, “Soup makes me healfy.”
My grandmother taught me to make broth as a little kid, and I mess around now making it with beef, lamb, chicken, turkey and even fish bones. My gran would add chicken feet and necks, but the chickens came from her farm. I can’t get organic feet where I live so I choose to use a good quality gelatin instead.
I’ve no idea whether it is the miracle it’s meant to be but my old granny lived well into her nineties. And I might add, my family is hardly ever sick. This nutrient dense meal might do the same for you, and it goes down so well.
Give it a try.
Meal 1 – Easy peasy mid-week roast chicken for 4.
Heat your oven to 450 °F. Grab a 4lb to 5lb chicken. Dry it with kitchen tissue inside and out (moisture detracts from the succulence: I don’t wash it!). Tie its legs together tightly with cotton string. Sprinkle lots of salt on top. Pop it in the preheated oven and set the timer for 1 hour and 5 minutes (you want the internal temperature of the chicken to reach 170 °F). You can even get a workout in whilst it’s cooking!
We serve ours with loads of greens, carrots and either mashed sweet potatoes or mashed cauliflower.
I strip the left over chicken from the carcass and use that to add to salad the next day. I pop the carcass into the fridge, in a tub of cold water with 2 tablespoons of vinegar. My gran used white vinegar but I use apple cider vinegar. My gran said it brought out the goodness! Once the bones have soaked, you’re ready to make your broth.
If you don’t have time to make the broth right away, throw the unsoaked carcass in the freezer and use it when ready. If you do this, you can add the vinegar when you’re boiling the carcass.
Meal 2 – Enter the bone broth
I tend to do this on a Friday or Saturday as it takes time but it’s so worth it!
- 1 chicken carcass
- 2 chicken feet or a tablespoon of good quality gelatin
- 2 litres of water
- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- 1 large chopped onion (skin and all)
- 2 celery sticks
- 1 bunch parsley
- 3 cloves of garlic
- Thumb sized piece of grated turmeric (optional)
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 peppercorns
- Salt to taste
Dissolve the gelatin in water if using.
Place chicken carcass and chicken feet or gelatin in a large pot with the water, vegetables, bay leaf and peppercorns (not the parsley, garlic and turmeric). If you haven’t soaked the carcass in vinegar water, add the vinegar now. Bring to the boil and then reduce heat to the lowest number and cover. You can either pop the liquid and carcass into a slow cooker over night or simmer it on the stovetop. I like to leave it simmering for about 10 hours.
Ten minutes before cooking time has finished add parsley, garlic and turmeric. Strain the broth and you’re good to go. You can store in the fridge or divide into freezer bags when cool and freeze. Great mid morning snack! You can also put it into ice cube trays and add it to puréed vegetables for a great grab and go lunch.
I add chopped turnip (rutabaga), chopped carrots and precooked chicken thighs to my broth OR for a Thai style soup, I add green Thai paste, grated ginger, cooked chicken, chopped cilantro, coconut milk and I drizzle through 2 beaten eggs. The eggs go stringy making great egg noodles!
When you put the broth in the fridge, it will turn into a jelly with fat on top. Up to you whether you use it or spoon it off.
- Want more killer performance-recipe ideas? Don’t miss Virginia’s excellent blog, Moozlers.
- Need more help sorting out your nutrition and fueling? Make sure to check out the Faction Foods Nutrition Course HERE.