Friday, June 28, 2013

Things I like to buy on Azure Standard - Part 3

*** WARNING *** Contains images of animal body parts. Proceed at your own risk. Not for the pregnant and nauseous, or faint of heart. ;)

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Several months ago, I found out that pretty much all ready chicken/beef/vegetable broth from the store contains MSG. Yes, even the organic, "all natural" brands, the ones that are labeled "MSG free." Drat! Broth was one of the few things I was rarely making from scratch.

Sigh.

Not that making my own stock would be that difficult thanks to my handy slow cooker, but coming by good bones for making it is difficult and often expensive, especially since we typically go through 2-4 quarts per week.

Imagine my delight (yes, delight) when I discovered Azure Standard carries - get ready for this - CHICKEN FEET


They clock in at just under $1.50/lb, and they are organic. The package is very big, so I suggest splitting it with another family. 

Whether or not you are keeping it all for yourself (I did), it is easiest to divide the chicken feet into individual, gallon-size freezer bags of about 1.5 to 2 lbs each. Because they are packed before being frozen, the feet will all be stuck together in one massive block by the time you receive it. I simply put the whole package inside doubled-up large (new) trash bags, and then repeatedly dropped the entire block onto my tile floor. The frozen feet separated perfectly, and it was much faster and easier than trying to chisel out two dozen or so feet each time I wanted to make stock. This will take up quite a bit of room in your freezer, however.

To make the broth, simply add to a crock pot: frozen chicken feet (one gallon bag full, about 1.5 lbs), celery stalks or root, one whole onion, peeled carrots or parsnips, bay leaves, peppercorns, a splash of apple cider vinegar (will help draw minerals from bones), a bunch of fresh parsley, and water to cover. 


Cook on low for 12-24 hours. Strain, fill into quart jars, and refrigerate (use within 5 days) or freeze (leave enough head space for expansion, and do not put a lid on it until the stock is completely frozen or the jar will burst). Because this is true bone broth, it will become gelatinous when cold, but will become completely liquid when heated.



The above batch yields about 4 qts of chicken stock. Very tasty, nutritious, economical, and free of questionable flavor enhancers. 

The process is the same for making beef broth. We get our bones from the ranch whenever we order beef, so that is not something we order on Azure. You can order the chicken feet on Azure Standard here

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24 comments:

  1. Oh, boy! You seriously just solved a problem for me! I have been wanting to buy chicken feet for stock, but couldn't figure out where to get them. Next month, it's chicken feet for me!! :)

    Diana

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  2. All those chicken feet look gross.

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  3. LOVE LOVE LOVE using the crock pot to make stocks! Such a time saver!

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  4. I grew up on a farm. How do they clean those feet so they are pristine enough to eat??????

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    1. No idea, but they are clean.

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    2. They remove the outer layer of skin and the talons

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  5. Have you ever been inside a chicken coop? Not sure I'd want to be eating feet. They don't call them "foul" for nothing.

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    1. In fact, we OWN a chicken coop, and yes, we go inside it daily. Our chickens feet are very clean, even without being washed. So I'm not worried about it.

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  6. Those are Rosie's of Petaluma chicken feet. Rosie's are fed soybean meal (probably GMO) and are not really free range (if they were, their diet wouldn't be entirely vegetarian, as they would eat bugs). Water is added to make them plumper.

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    1. These are organic, so not GMO. Are they the perfect chickens? Hardly. But I doubt the ready-made organic stock at the store is made from better chickens (or chicken parts). Get over it.

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  7. I was wondering the same thing -- how to they clean them?

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  8. Hi Zsuzsanna,

    Not a comment post, just a personal note. I had emailed about flouride and Kumbucha a while back. Sarah, the Health Home Econimist (I know, I agree, her 'birth control' article was horrid!) has a post on the flouride in the Kumbucha. http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/fluoride-in-kombucha-should-you-be-concerned/#more-11719 ... Good info.

    We had potluck at our church yesterday. I find in a lot of the IFB circles I have been in that we are looked at as some strange new agers if they know we eat 'traditional/organic/chem free'. So, I would love to go to a potluck at your church (as well as be welcomed to sit with all my children during a service.) Hope you are enjoying your summer so far. From Canada, Crystal.

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    1. Thank you for the link - very interesting!

      And yeah, churches serving the cheapest, crummiest food makes me roll my eyes.

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  9. You love the pitter patter of little feet (even if they are chicken feet!) This broth looks great, so good for all of you. Keep doing a wonderful job of nourishing your family the right way (and in many ways :)

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  10. Love your blog, but that is nasty!

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    1. True - few of us are used to seeing where food comes from.

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  11. Your husband makes six figures. Just boil a footless, headless, free range chicken!

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    1. My husband doesn't make six figures - not that you should speculate about it. And believe me, I wish I could find chicken heads to throw into my stock! :)

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    2. BTW, have you ever heard the saying "You learn how to be frugal from rich people" - there is a lot of truth in it. Just because you can afford to buy something for more money, doesn't mean you should.

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    3. Plus the feet have the most collagen and nutrition

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  12. Have you ever looked up a recipe for deep fried chicken feet? Guess it's quite popular *somewhere* ;) We just butchered chicken Friday. This year and last year my sisters brother-in-law wanted the chicken feet to deep fry them. I had NO IDEA you could make stock with it... That means I THREW AWAY 150 feet this year, and 400 feet last year :( Wow, what a waste!

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    1. In Spain, we have a saying: "Del cerdo [se aprovechan] hasta los andares" (Of the pig, even the walks [are put to use]). And now with the Internet, it is very easy to find out how! So if you find yourself throwing something out regularly, do just that. For instance, carrot tops, and radish tops, both can be eaten.

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Your KINDLY WORDED, constructive comments are welcome, whether or not they express a differing opinion. All others will be deleted without second thought.