What WOULD Bekki Eat?

Well, I'll start with what I wouldn't eat. I wouldn't eat margarine. Or tofu. Or lowered-fat anything. Olestra is right out. Hydrolyzed, isolated, evaporated, enriched, or chocolate flavored "phood" won't pass these lips.
What will I eat? Real food. Made-at-home food. Food that my great-great-grandmother could have made, if she had the money and the time. And if she hadn't been so busy trick-riding in a most unladylike way.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

I'm late, I'm late

Sheesh, the pressure of blog upkeep. I probably would have quit already, if hubby wasn't obsessively taking pictures of everything I heat up.
Last night's dinner was so good I had to go sit on the couch for a while afterward. So... I never got around to posting. I watched the Bills vs Cowboys game, which was supposed to be a lopsided beat-down. It turned out to be a crazy game with trick plays, false hope, and finally a last-minute game-winning field goal. Two last-minute game-winning field goals, actually, but only one counted.

But this isn't a blog about football. I don't eat football.

Last night's dinner: the smoked pork butt (it's so hard to figure out how to slice stuff like that), storebought oven-roasted rosemary potatoes, and steamed broccoli and green beans (the end of two bags.) Simple and delicious.

Now, for the stock. It actually came first, but... the pictures aren't as pretty. Stock/broth/whatever is so easy, I don't know what took me so long to finally make it. Now I make it a lot and feel guilty whenever I buy it from the store. Canned and boxed just can't compare. The gelatin in stock (and natural glucosamine and chondroitin, for those with achy joints) is the secret to it's magic. And the best gelatin comes from the feet (and heads, if you can get 'em.) Chicken feet don't look like good eats, but they make a much better stock.

So, you start with the bones of a chicken you've roasted, smoked, whatever. (Some people start with the whole chicken, but I don't like boiled meat, and it's the bones that give up the goodie.) Or you can save the bones from whatever chicken you eat for a while- stick them in a bag in the freezer. Also stick onion peels, carrot butts, and chopped bits of whatever veggies you go through into that bag.
When it's full, plop it in a big pot, cover with water, add a splash of vinegar, and let it sit for an hour (longer if the stuff is still frozen.) The vinegar pulls minerals out of the bones. Add a couple stalks of fresh celery, a carrot or two, a smashed garlic clove, and a parsnip, if you've got it. An onion, chopped in fourths is nice, as well.

Then, bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer... that means the water is barely moving, no constant bubbling. Simmer for a long time. Overnight. Less than two days.

If you've got some softer stuff in there, like I sometimes do, (mushroom stems, pepper tops, collard stems) take that stuff out a bit sooner.
The leftover stuff looks kinda gross, huh?

Then you can either turn the heat up a little on the chicken stock, to reduce it down, or just let it cool and be done. Almost done, anyway. Some people like to put it in the fridge and skim the fat off the next day. I am not a fat-skimmer. I do like to put it in the fridge for a day, though. Because that's how I find out if it gelled. I used to get really good "chicken jell-o," but now I don't. Same chickens, same feet, no idea why.
Now I'm out of those good pastured chickens. But not the feet- I bought extra!

Speaking of the feet... when I first managed to find some in a store I was perplexed. How many feet go into a pot of stock? My recipes don't say. They just say to use feet, if you've got 'em. I spent a good deal of time thinking about it. I mentioned it to my hubby. We puzzled.
Until finally, one day, as I was pulling my stock bag out of the freezer, the idiocy of my wonderment hit me.

How many feet go into a stock pot?
Um, duh... probably two per chicken.
Unless it was some sort of mutant chicken... or had a run-in with a fox.


I'd like to point out that this was way before I gave up gluten and dairy, so my brain didn't work very well.

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About Me

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Tejas, United States
I am many things... all at the same time. (No wonder I don't get much done!) I am a wife to a retired infantryman, mother of 3, stocker (and stalker) of the fridge, passionate fan of food, nutrition, ecology, coffee, wine, and college football. I love all things witchy and piratey. I often cook with booze. I feed stray cats. I don't believe in sunscreen. I don't like shoes and really hate socks. And I currently can't eat any gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, coconut(!?), or sodium metabisulfite (aw, shucks, no chemical snackies.) Sometimes even citric acid gets me. But only sometimes.