Friday, 10 January 2014

12 Hour Slow Cooker (Crockpot) Chicken Broth (AIP, Paleo)

An effortless recipe for chicken broth, packed with good things like collagen and calcium… 

Want to make a full-flavoured chicken stock without all the simmering, keeping an eye on the pan and all the rest of it? Want to be able to just leave it there while you go to bed and not give it a second's thought? (Until you wake up to a house smelling like Christmas morning, and an insatiable urge to make soup). 

Well here it is. 



12 hour chicken broth stock

Broth is a funny thing. If you're on the paleo diet - or if you know the health benefits of sipping a nutritious broth - you'll know that it's actually very good for you indeed - and practically costs nothing to make. But the problem is that sipping on a mug of bone broth is viewed as a bit old-fashioned these days, which is a shame. 

My stock turned to jelly in the picture above - this is a good sign that cartilage and soft bones have broken down and absorbed into the liquid. A good bone broth will give you calcium, collagen and important nutrients like proline, which help calm down an overactive immune system, heal the stomach and basically promote all-round healing in the body. See? It's not just an old wives' tale, after all. This article has a lot more information on how brilliant bone broth really is. 

You can use your chicken broth to make soups - clear or blended with veggies, your choice - add it to stews or just drink it as it is. To drink as it is, you might want to play around with some flavourings - try your favourite herbs, some lemon juice, add some salt and just tinker with the flavours to make it taste right for you. A pinch of Chinese 5 Spice (if you can eat seeds and seed spices) would be good here too. I like mine best just ladled, while it's hot, over some mashed butternut squash, shredded roast chicken and avocado slices, for breakfast. 

12 Hour Slow Cooker (Crockpot) Chicken Broth
Makes approx 500ml. 

To make the broth, just drop the carcass from a leftover roast chicken into your slow cooker's crockpot, along with all the bits of skin, leg bones, wing bones and cartilage that you have leftover, too. Pour in some boiling water - about 500ml - and replace the lid. For absolute best broth, some acid will help the nutrients come out of the bones so trickle in a little cider vinegar or lemon juice - or just chuck in a halved lemon before replacing the lid. Leave the slow cooker on low for 12 hours - you could even leave it for more if you wanted to. 

Once the time is up, switch off the slow cooker.  Place a sieve over a large bowl - the type you mix your cake batter in - and ladle the carcass, bones and skin into the sieve, allowing the broth to trickle down into the bowl. Sit the bowl in a sink filled a little with cold water, to help it cool down quickly (you don't want to be leaving this on the worktop for hours on end). Once it's sufficiently cool, cover with clingfilm and store in the fridge. 

Do you make your own broth? Do you have any tips to share?

I've entered this in Pheonix Helix's Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtable… go check it out to see the other entries and for more Paleo AIP recipe inspiration...