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Recipe of the Week

Detail of Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

A great dish for dessert or breakfast, these filled crepes are quick and easy to make, full of wonderful flavor, and make any occasion special.

Homemade Chicken Stock

I use my chicken stock to make a large variety of chicken soups and stews, to boil, steam, or saute vegetables, to mash potatoes or other vegetables, and in any other recipe that calls for stock, broth, or even oftentimes butter or water. It is a way to cut fat and calories from a lot of dishes and add tons of wonderful flavor. For when you need small amounts of stock for vegetables or potatoes, fill up an ice cube tray with stock. Let freeze, then remove from the tray and place in a labeled freezer bag or airtight container. You can do this with any stock (or juice, leftover wine, and most other liquids). Whenever I cook a chicken dish and trim off cartilage, have wingtips or other pieces I do not need, debone a breast, or have a small amount of leftovers, I throw it in a freezer bag. I never buy boneless chicken breasts. I save a huge amount of money and buy split breasts. I cut the breasts off of the bones as I need them and save the bones and any extra meat in my growing supply of frozen chicken parts. When I have about 2 large freezer bags full of chicken pieces, I make chicken stock. I personally discard the fat before adding the pieces to the bag, but you can certainly keep it and just make extra sure to skim off the excess fat. You can use fresh or frozen chicken parts if you do not have scraps on hand.

3-5 pounds raw or cooked chicken scraps, meat, and bones
Water to cover by one inch
Freshly ground peppers
1 onion, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
4 celery stalks and leaves, chopped
1 small bunch chopped parsley
2 chopped garlic cloves

Throw the frozen bits and pieces of chicken into a large stock pot and cover with the water, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Skim off the fat that rises to the top. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 2 hours, adding additional water to keep everything covered. Strain through a sieve into a large bowl, adjust the seasonings if needed, and refrigerate until very cold. Scrape off all of the fat that congeals on top. Freeze in various freezer-safe airtight containers, use in your favorite recipes, or pour into ice cube trays and freeze. The stock will also keep for a few days in the refrigerator.

Makes about 8 cups stock.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
Cooling Time: 8 hours minutes
Total Time: 10 hours, 30 minutes

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