OK, OK, OK I know it’s about time I use my pressure canner. I had one before and it sat so long that I finally got rid of it. It’s probably been a year since I purchased the one I have now and still hadn’t used it.
I posted on my Facebook for someone to come help me and to my rescue came a wonderful friend. We even had a date and time set for her to come show me how not to be afraid. Then I realized you are not supposed to pressure can jelly.
So recently when a friend was telling me about how beneficial it was to make your own chicken broth I decided it was time to face my fears. I purchased a non antibioticed (my own word) chicken and set out to make and can my own broth.
After several Youtube videos and studying my manual I was on my way. After all what could possibly happen? This from someone who can always see the worst in everything.
I cooked my chicken, veggies and water to make my broth. There are several great recipes on the internet. I used a whole chicken, onion, celery, parsley, and carrots. Oh yes and the special ingredient was vinegar. This helps break down the bones to extract the calcium. You must also use good filtered water. No sense in getting good ingredients and putting them into bad water. You bring all the ingredients to a boil and then turn on low to simmer. Here is a good website for different types of broths.
While the broth is cooking you will have to skim the yuck off the top from time to time. By the way where does that stuff come from? I cooked mine for about 4 hours.
I then drained the liquid. Next I canned the broth and put the jars in the pressure canner. It was actually an easy process and I was able to get it to a stable pressure for the 25 minutes I needed. I canned 4 pints which was great as I didn’t measure the water I used.
After I got my jars in the canner and was confident that it was not going to explode I began going through my chicken and veggies to fish out the bones. This is a tedious job if you are wanting to save the meat and veggies for later use. It helps if you are a little OCD like me. I remember getting my sons TONS of Legos out every now and then and sorting through them. Putting all the small one in bags and finding all the hands, legs, arms and heads of all the little people and putting them back together. OK I digress.
I ended up with 2 nice bags of chicken and veggies that I put in the freezer for future use. It will be nice to serve on rice or just eat on its own, which I did for dinner.
The last thing I did was to clean the bones and lay them out to dry for a couple of days. Did you know you can make your own bone meal for your garden. I love this post from the Scholarly Redneck.
So from my chicken I canned 4 pints of stock, put 2 meals in the freezer, and and making some bone meal. How great is that!