jacques pepin's basic chicken stock

jacques pepin\'s basic chicken stock
6 qt cold water
4 lbs chicken bones
necks, backs, wings, etc. as skinless as possible
1 whole onion
large, about 8 ounces, quartered
1 tbsp herbes de Provence
12 whole cloves
4 whole bay leaves
1 tbsp soy sauce
gnarly box
While it requires lots of passive time, basic chicken stock is really easy to make. We use Jacques Pepin’s (aka JP) base recipe and technique below as a starting point, but we always make it different every time. We reserve vegetable and herb trimmings and throw them into our “gnarly box” in the freezer. When our gnarly box is full, we make a batch of stock with chicken bones and necks from previous dishes, or we just buy the chicken bones for $1 per pound from our local butcher. The contents of gnarly box goes into the broth after the bones have simmered. Gnarly box is a practice we learned from JP. He probably doesn’t call it the same thing, but we know he has one sitting in his freezer now. JP grew up in France during World War II when food was scarce and his mom would bike for miles to find food. He lets nothing go to waste, so neither do we. If you want to get fancy with your chicken stock, check out the ramen broth recipe we made in September 2011. If you want to perform magic with your chicken stock, check out our post for consomme.
Bring the bones and water to a boil in the stock pot. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Skim and discard any scum that rises.
Add the onion, herbes de Provence, cloves, bay leaves, and soy sauce if using. Also add the contents of gnarly box at this time if using. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 2 1/2 hours or more if you have the time.
Line the mesh strainer with moistened paper towels and strain the stock through it. Cool the stock then store. It will keep in the fridge for 5 days or for a few months in the freezer.
source: Jacques Pepin
Straining the broth through the moistened paper towel not only captures fine particles, but it also absorbs the fat. I had stored my stock in the fridge with the intent of skimming the solidified fat the next day. I was pleasantly surprised to see that there was virtually none!