Make Ahead

Lemony Chicken Broth (or Stock)

March  1, 2010
2 Ratings
  • Serves About 5 cups
Author Notes

This is so ridiculously easy and basic that it feels strange to submit it. I started adding lemon to chicken broth ages ago. The Worcestershire sauce kind of rounds out the flavors. You can use whatever fresh herbs you have on hand--and depending on your plans for the broth. I grow thyme and rosemary, but alas, will have to wait a few months before I can just go out to the garden and take a few snips. —drbabs

What You'll Need
  • 1 carcass from roast chicken, plus any juices that have settled on the plate.
  • water to cover
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion, cut into quarters
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  • 2 large carrots, washed and cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 stalks celery, with leaves, washed and cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, rough chopped (Thyme or rosemary are good, too.)
  • 1 large lemon, cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  1. Place chicken and accumulated juices in stock pot. Add enough water to cover. Place on burner on high and bring to boil.
  2. Meanwhile, add in all the rest of the ingredients. Squeeze the lemon juice into the broth and put the cut lemons in, too.
  3. Once the water comes to a rolling boil, reduce heat to low so that it continues to simmer, just below boiling. Let it simmer uncovered for about 2-3 hours. You want it to reduce somewhat, concentrating the flavors. Occasionally spoon off any foam or debris that comes to the surface.
  4. Turn heat off. Some people let soup cool to room temperature before dividing. My mother-in-law used to leave chicken soup on the stove for days. According to the USDA, "Bacteria grow most rapidly in the range of temperatures between 40 and 140 °F, some doubling in number in as little as 20 minutes. Some types will produce toxins that are not destroyed by cooking. Hot food can be placed directly in the refrigerator or it can be rapidly chilled in an ice or cold water bath before refrigerating. A large pot of food like soup or stew should be divided into small portions and put in shallow containers before being refrigerated. "
  5. Remove the chicken carcass and strain the soup into a pitcher. (I actually strain it twice--once through a colander to get out all the big pieces, and a second time through a fine-mesh strainer to get the little stuff. You can line the fine mesh strainer with cheese cloth, but the strainer works fine for me.)
  6. Pour the broth into containers and freeze or refrigerate.
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  • AntoniaJames
  • drbabs
  • TheWimpyVegetarian

7 Reviews

AntoniaJames March 16, 2010
I find that peppercorns seem to become bitter when cooked at length in a stock (or any dish for that matter). In fact, I've always thought that was why you typically add it at the very end. What kind do you use? ;o)
drbabs March 16, 2010
Interesting...when I made it at my sister's house last week, she had Telicherry (sp?) black pepper, and it didn't get bitter; it was just really peppery. I have a bag of mixed peppercorns that I used last night--and again, it wasn't bitter, but just not very peppery.
AntoniaJames March 16, 2010
I have never used peppercorns in stock, but that's because I like to use pepper on a more individual basis, in the dishes in which the stock ultimately is used. I tried another of the Editor Pick test-recipes (one other than that for which I signed up), which called for peppercorns, and didn't care much for the flavor. I used good peppercorns, too, i.e., ones that taste great when freshly ground. Since then, I've done some research and discovered that Amaryll Schwertner of Boulettes Larder in San Francisco (a fancy shop selling chicken stock for $13 per quart, as of the date of the article), recommends not using peppercorns, for the same reason. I'd be interested in the experiences of others on this point . . . .
drbabs March 16, 2010
Thanks for sharing that. I think next time I'll try it without pepper. You're right, I do add pepper to whatever I'm making, generally right before I'm serving it. So it's probably not necessary to have pepper in the stock.
drbabs March 16, 2010
I've made this twice since I submitted it. I must have guessed the amount of black pepper the first time. When I used a teaspoon of ground pepper, it was a little too peppery (for me). And when I used a teaspoon of peppercorns, it wasn't peppery enough. So be sure and add pepper to your taste--it's only a rough measurement.
TheWimpyVegetarian March 1, 2010
I love the addition of the lemon and Worcestershire sauce!
drbabs March 1, 2010
Thanks--me, too!