Hey everyone, I've been failing to make a good, gelatinous broth lately; it doesn't even turn to jelly upon refrigeration, has little flavour, is too light in colour and very, very fatty.
I did this in a crock pot. I got an organic chicken carcass, first stuck all the bones in a pan of cold water with a little apple cider vinegar, some onions, crushed garlic, and herbs. I brought it to the boil, then transferred it to the slow cooker and cooked it on low for 24 hours. The bones became very, very soft (I ate quite a few alongside my dinner, actually, tasted awesome!)
Why isn't it working? There was still a fair bit of meat on the carcass; perhaps that was the problem?
Thanks in advance to all broth fiends!
It could be too much meat. I've had that problem before. The water/vinegar needs exposed bone and cartilage to work on.
Did you try the egg test on your vinegar? I can't remember where I read this post, but a blogger who was having trouble with her broth realized it was her vinegar that was to blame. It seems like vinegar should be vinegar and it all should work the same, but some things that are sold as vinegar don't actually "act like" vinegar, which begs the question what makes it legal to call it vinegar and market it as such? Anyway, to do an egg test, put an egg in a glass of vinegar (enough to cover the egg) and let it sit for 2-3 days. The shell should be gone or almost gone with only a membrane left holding the egg together in an egg shape. If this doesn't happen, then you need to find another vinegar (which the blogger did with much better bone broths to follow).
I tried this test with the three vinegars on my shelf and two performed admirably with no egg shell left after about 2.5 days (a white vinegar and a red wine vinegar). The other one was only partially dissolved after 3 days (a flavored balsamic vinegar).
Kinda fun if you like science experiments!
You'll get the gelatin only in lesser amounts from the marrow.
When preparing your stock, make sure that you also expose as much cartilage from the carcass as possible. This means getting all the knuckle joints from the thighs, the tip of cartilage on the keelbone (the bone between the breast) and chop up the wing tips.
Also, skin will cook down to a significant amount of gelatin with the side-effect of having a lot of fat floating on your broth. If you are chilling the broth, you can peel the solidified fat off and save it for other items (or discard if you are watching PUFA/Omega 6)... so if you can include skin, wingtips, cocks combs, chicken feet, etc... you'll get a bit more collagen into your broth, which will result in a much more gelatinous broth.
My chicken bone broth always includes the joint tissues as well as skin and bones.
Even so, it is not as firm as my beef bone broth. I've always assumed the difference is the difference in mass of marrow and connective tissues--even if you use a lot of poultry bones, the mass of marrow and joint tissues is much less than you'll find in a typical set of beef marrow/joint bones.
Just think of the small circumference of the poultry bones and joints compared to the huge circles in the beef.
The only way I can make gelatinous stock; works every single time, and it doesn't matter if the bones are grass or grain fed, organic or not, is...
- Roast the bones until very well browned.
- Remove from oven and immediately place in a stock-pot with very cold water.
The bones must be hot from the oven; the water must be cold.
This makes sense when you think that when making Jello, you mix hot and cold. Right?
I don't add vinegar or tomato at all. BTW, if you use vegetables (I like carrots and shallots; bay leaf), roast them with the bones. Yum!
I use a pressure cooker, and make mine similarly to this method.
I use the frozen beef bones from the regular grocery stores, the round kind full of marrow.
Here is another site with instructions. Some folks roast the bones first. I don't.
All the best to you.:)
I've run into the same problem with the occasional chicken stock, and I'm thinking that it's probably because of the ratio of bones to water in your stock. You might try using more bones, or less water, the next time you do up the broth. That did the trick for me.
I have no idea what you did wrong, but I'll tell you what I do and it makes a gelatinous broth every time.
Ingredients: onion, garlic, carrots, celery, bones. For bones I just used the leftovers from what I ate...So for example, 1 large turkey leg bone, and 3 chicken thigh bones.
Was the chicken cooked before the carcass was made into soup? Roasting the bones can bring out a lot more flavor.
Also, although I don't like celery in just about any other form, I find that chicken stock without onions, celery, carrots, and bay leaf tastes like it's lacking something.
Ive found that I need to roast the chicken or beef roast before using the bones. I have no idea why it works but it seems to release all the goodness!! When I make a whole chicken I don't put anything on it. It sacrifices "fancy" flavors in the meat maybe..but when I take the whole carcass (after meat has been removed) and dump all the juices from the roast..yeah..awesome!
I always roast the bones, or use the carcas from a roast chicken. Juice of a lemon, no vinegar.And no veg. Just enough water to cover - if there is too much water, then the gelatine is too dilute to "set". Cook either in a pressure cooker for about an hour, or in a slow cooker for about 8 / 10 hours. If you cook too long, the gelatine can start to degrade which again means no gelling.
If you can get a few chickens feet, or a calf foot split to go in with the chicken bones, so much the better.
But in my book, it is a) not too much water b) cook long enough to dissolve the gelatinous bits but not longer.
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