- Author: Lauria Watts
Made a batch of chicken broth recently and pressure canned it up. For previous batches I have used a conglomeration of leftover chicken bones, carcasses, necks and such that I stash in my freezer for just such a use. For this batch I went shopping for some other things.
The shopping run was a combo of necessary and recreational shopping; heavy on the necessary and light on the recreational. Went to Smart and Final for some basic needed items. Cruised down to our bank to make a quick deposit. Conveniently across the street from the bank was a 99 Ranch Market. I needed a few things for some Chinese recipes I wanted to try AND this is where I could buy some chicken feet for my broth.
Yep, chicken feet. I had read more than a few articles saying that adding chicken feet to your broth added lots of flavor and gelatin and I am all for that. I placed my package of rather pricey, prepared, fresh chicken feet (cleaned, boiled and peeled, supposed to be ready to go) in my cart. I got the rest of my items and then remembered that 99 Ranch sells stewing chickens and went to grab one of those from the freezer case. I made my purchase and headed for home and put everything away to use the next day for broth.
Early the next morning I got up to make my broth. Dug out the frozen chicken bones and put ‘em in the pot along with the stewing chicken.
Now to prep the chicken feet. According to the recipe I had, I was supposed to cut the nails off of the feet. Kinda creepy at first, but snip-clip with the meat shears and that task was done. Next I was instructed to bring a pot of water to a boil and boil the feet for one minute and then drain and rinse, which I did.
I threw the feet in the pot, made sure there was plenty of water to cover all with a little swimming room and turned the stove. The big pot was brought to the boil then turned it down to a simmer, covered it and let it simmer for several hours.
Now about the, um, aroma of the chicken foot broth. It was, well, not stinky (the feet were supposed to be ready to use), but definitely had a barn-yardy, funky smell. It was enough to make me want to do a taste-test before processing because if it tasted like the smell, down the sink it was going. Upon tasting (I added a bit of salt for flavor) I was very happy. Though the funky aroma was there, the flavor was just fine, nice and intense. I processed it all.
I have 7 or so quarts left of the broth I canned. When I opened up the first jar, the funk was for-sure lessened. And the next couple of jars seemed to be funk-free and have added tasty depth to my chicken and dumplings and various meat sauces, soups and gravies.
Will I do this again? Yes. But I will maybe boil the chicken feet for a few more minutes and probably do it more than once!