At home, I don’t buy premade chicken broth in the cans, but I always make fresh chicken broth every time. Invest 1/2 of hour and let it simmer for 2-3 hours in the stove without your attention, the final soup is so much tastier, flavorful and fresh. I usually use chicken for anything that calls for broth, but you can use the recipe, subtitute it for beef bones and pork bones to make beef or pork stock. If you don’t use the whole pot of stock at one time, fill it into smaller container and freeze it until you need it.
Some cook don’t salt their stock, assuming they will salt it later. I prefer to salt my stock lightly, and when I’m ready to make the dish, then I’ll adjust the taste accordingly.
Recipe to Make Vietnamese Chicken Stock – Nước Dùng Gà
Makes about 5 quarts of stock
1 whole chicken (about 4-5 lbs)
7 quarts water
1 large yellow onion, peeled the outer layer and cut in half
1 chubby 3 inch piece fresh ginger, unpeeled, cut into .2 inch thick
2 lemongrass stalks
10 whole peppercorns
1 yellow rock candy sugar (~2 tbsp)
3 tsp salt
Cut the chicken in half and rinse it under cold water to remove any bloody residue.
Fill water into a stock pot about half full and bring it to a boil. Put the chicken into the stock pot and bring it back to boil, let it cook for about 5 minutes. At this time, you will see a lot of foam and impurities floating on the top of the pot. Turn off the stove, discard this first broth, remove all fat and skin from the chicken, rinse the chicken and pot really well.
Fill about 6 quarts of water into the stock pot again, bring it to a boil and add chicken in. Bring almost a boil and lower the heat to a simmer. When waiting the water to boil, put the ginger and onion into the oven to grill them until lightly charred and fragrant. Now use a heavy cleaver and whack the lemongrass and ginger a bit, then put them into the broth with onion. Add rock candy, salt and let the stock simmer and low heat for 2 1/2 hours.
Taste the broth and then turn off the stove. Let it stand undisturbed for about 1/2 hr to cool down and filter the broth through a strainer. Keep the broth and discard the rest. The stock is now ready to use.
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