Stewing Hens

Stewing Hens

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Approx 3-4 lbs. A Stewing hen is a 2 year-old laying hen who has served her time. While it's difficult to say goodbye to these animals, we're grateful for the way they nourish our lives and the important role they play in the having a healthy farm, and we show our appreciation in respecting them as much as possible throughout their lives. A stewing hen makes for some of the best broth and gravy you'll ever taste. They yield a modest two cups of meat, and lots of broth. Your soups and stews have never tasted so vibrate. This is an excellent way to finally appreciate your laying hens.

*the meat can be a bit tough even after slow cooking. I most often blend the meat a bit in the blender before adding to soups (but not necessary).

How to make nourishing Bone Broth:

2 pounds (or more) of bones from pastured chickens- Since you’ll be extracting the minerals and drinking them in concentrated form, you want to make sure that the animal was as healthy as possible.
2 chicken feet and 1 neck for extra gelatin
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 carrots
2 stalks of celery
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Optional: 1 bunch of parsley, 1 tablespoon or more of sea salt, 1 teaspoon peppercorns, additional herbs or spices to taste.

You'll also need a large stock pot or slow cooker to cook the broth in and a strainer to remove the pieces when it is done.

Place the bones in a large stock pot (I use a 5 gallon pot) or a slow cooker. Pour water over the bones and add the vinegar. The acid helps make the nutrients in the bones more available.

Rough chop and add the vegetables to the pot. Add any salt, pepper, spices, or herbs, if using.

Now, bring the broth to a boil. Once it has reached a vigorous boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer for 24 hours. When I'm using my slow cooker I start it off on high and reduce to low heat once it starts to boil.

Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Strain using a fine metal strainer to remove all the bits of bone and vegetable. When cool enough, store in a gallon size glass jar in the fridge for up to 5 days, or freeze for later use.