I make stock (of the chicken and vegetable variety) all the time. Like, at least once a week. Why you ask? For a number of reasons.
1) iI’s super good for you. The nutrients you can get from drinking stock are fantastic, and easier to absorb. I personally have a hard time getting proper nutrition (thanks Crohns!) So I try to drink a cup of broth daily.
2) It’s way tastier than anything store bought. Store bought stock is traditionally a faint yellow color, where my stock is a deep brown. It’s so beautiful! And tasty, so much more tasty.
3) It’s inexpensive. To buy the amount of stock I can produce in my crock pot would cost me about $10, on the low estimate. However, it costs me less than a dollar. I have the chicken bones anyway, as I roasted the chicken and saved the bones, and the veggie scraps are from whatever we have eaten and produced through the week. Usually a few carrots, celery stalks, and half an onion or so. I use stock to cook with all the time (soup, rice, risotto, meat dishes, pasta, everything) so I would spend a small fortune on stock if I didn’t make it myself. If I save minimum ten bucks a week, that’s over five hundred bucks a year. That’s a nice chunk of change!
So really, if you aren’t making stock, you’re doing yourself a disservice. It’s beyond easy (put all ingredients in the crock pot, cover with water, and cook for 24 hours. Leave it alone, it’ll take care of yourself).
After it’s all cooked, I use tongs to pick out the large pieces, and then strain the stock (don’t want tiny little bits of bone floating around in there, do you?) Then I use a ladle and my canning funnel to put fill some jars, let them cool at room temp on the counter, and put in the fridge. You can also freeze it. I like to fill ice cube molds and freeze a few batches as it keeps longer that way. If I don’t have a plan to use it within a week, I will definitely freeze it.
Tonight I knew I was going to make posole for dinner (chicken and hominy soup) so I didn’t freeze it. Simply put in jars for a few hours and it went into my soup this evening. I think there are two remaining pint jars in the fridge for me to drink throughout the week. Yum! (What, am I the only one who drinks chicken stock from a mug? I really recommend it, give it a try!)