Sunday, January 24, 2010

Cooking the Book – Simple Chinese Cooking – Light Chicken Stock

It’s not often that we get below freezing temperatures in Mississippi, but when the weather forecast calls for below freezing all weekend, you know it’s a good time for soup. So what would I make to protect myself from the arctic temperatures, gumbo? That was on the menu, but I instead looked to my cookbook collection and saw my only Kylie Kwong book, “Simple Chinese Cooking”.

Conveniently, “Simple Chinese Cooking” has a section simply titled “Soups”, and after narrowing my choices to “Sweet Corn and Chicken“ and “Prawn Wonton” soups, I was ready to start. Well, I thought I was.

Sure, I could use some canned chicken stock but with my freezer full of bones, It seemed like it was a no-brainer to make my own stock. With both of the soups calling for Kwong’s “Light Chinese Chicken Stock”, I got started.

Finding all the ingredients wasn’t too hard.

4 lbs of chicken carcasses, 16 spring onions, 1 large red onion, ginger, and 10 cloves of garlic make for a different stock than the French style that I’m used to.

With some quick knife work, I had the vegetables prepared.

The onion was roughly chopped, the ginger was sliced into 10 slices., the garlic cloves crushed, and the spring onions were trimmed and then cut in half.

Now, everything went into a stock pot with 6 quarts of cold water.

The stock was brought to a boil, reduced to a simmer, skimmed for impurities, and then reduced to a lower simmer for 2 hours.

After all that, the stock was strained and I was now ready to make the first soup.

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