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Home-made Cream of Chicken/ Turkey Broth

This is an original family recipe that we ourselves cooked up (excuse the pun) from scratch. It's loosely based on the lovely concoction that Mam used to make for us when we were ill in bed often with mumps, measles, chicken pox or some other dastardly childhood ailment. You know - when you've been GENUINELY ill, lost your appetite and haven't got the energy for any more mischief!

This cream of chicken broth smelled and tasted so good that you couldn't resist it - regardless of how badly you'd lost your appetite. Once you taste this, tinned Cream of Chicken soup will only be fit for the bin!!

You haven't got to be ill in bed to savour it though - as a warm winter filler it's always good - especially in a flask when you're down on your lottie.

Ingredients

For a family of 6 - 8 (vary ingredients depending on the No of servings required). You'll need:

  1. 1 Small chicken or the left-over carcass from the previous day's dinner - if you want to find a home for your left-over Christmas turkey, then this is also the place for it.

  2. 2 - 3 slices of smoked bacon

  3. 2 medium sized carrots or similar quantity

  4. 2 medium sized parsnips or similar quantity

  5. An onion - as large as you like (or/ and shallots  or leeks if you fancy using them)

  6. 2 medium sized stalks of celery

  7. 1 large sweet pepper (red/ yellow or green or mixed)

  8. A generous pinch of dill (dried & chopped stuff is fine)

  9. A generous pinch of parsley (again dried & chopped stuff is fine)

  10. 300mls of double cream

  11. Salt & pepper to season

  12. A couple of chicken stock cubes (optional)

  13. Water

Preparation

  • Wash your uncooked chicken thoroughly in water and then put it in a large saucepan (a pressure cooker without the lid is perfect). Or instead put in your left-over carcass of chicken or turkey.  Cover with water. You obviously don't need to wash the carcass - only the uncooked meat if you're not using a carcass. I personally prefer a left-over roasted carcass for this recipe.

  • Add the stock cubes and the rashers of smoked bacon - the smoked bacon is a key ingredient. Without it's influence you will only have an "ordinary" chicken broth.

  • Bring to the boil and then simmer for as long as it takes for the chicken/ turkey meat to separate from the bone and for the bacon rashers to thoroughly cook through. If you're using a carcass boil until the carcass bones are clean of meat and again the rashers of bacon are cooked.

  • Remove the bacon rashers and put to one side. A bread & butter sandwich made from this bacon is a great accompaniment to the broth as you sip it later!

  • Strain the fluid containing your meat through a large wire strainer. Return the resulting stock to your saucepan.

  • Separate the meat from the bones. Dispose of all bones and put the finely shredded meat to one side for the time being.

  • Peel your carrots, parsnips, onions (or shallots and/or leeks as well - if you intend using them for your recipe). DICE VERY FINELY - this is important - you don't want a finished article containing vegetable boulders! All veg ingredients should resemble a course pulp.

  • Prepare your pepper (or peppers) take out seeds and cut into thin strips about half the length of your little finger.

  • Tip: you can - if you want - separate the onions/ shallots and/or leeks from the other veg and gently fry them in some butter. This greatly enhances the flavour. When softened add to your stock (don't over cook when frying, or you'll get a burnt taste in your broth).

  • Bring your clear stock that's in the saucepan back to the boil, now is a  good time for a little taste test to see how much seasoning is required. This varies because some bacon (that has been boiled in it) is saltier than others. Add your seasoning of salt and pepper to taste & bring your stock back to the boil. Add ALL your diced vegetables.

  • Give the diced veg a head start whilst you finely dice the celery. Add the celery to the stock. Continue simmering until your broth starts to thicken.

  • Add the herbs - as large a pinch of dill and parsley as you like - depending on your preferences.

  • Add the double cream and continue to stir the broth.

  • Add the chicken/ turkey meat - that you set aside earlier - back into the saucepan

  • Once the broth has thickened and the herbs have cooked then serve your masterpiece with a sandwich of the smoked bacon (that's optional - buttered French bread is also beautiful with it.) ENJOY!