This basic white stock is the foundation of many soups, sauces, and rice and pasta dishes. In addition to the stock, it yields two beautifully poached chicken breasts, ideal for chicken salads and sandwiches, such as the Rosemary Chicken Salad Sandwiches, page 170.
1 (4-pound) whole chicken
3 cups coarsely chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped carrot
2 large onions, peeled and halved (about 1 1/2 pounds)
3 1/2 quarts water
How to Make It
Remove and discard giblets and neck from chicken. Rinse chicken with cold water; place chicken in an 8-quart stockpot. Add celery and remaining ingredients; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat, and simmer 45 minutes; skim surface occasionally, discarding solids.
Remove chicken from pot; cool. Remove chicken breast meat from bones; reserve for another use. Return chicken to pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer an additional 2 hours, skimming surface occasionally.
Strain stock through a sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Cool stock to room temperature. Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours. Skim solidified fat from surface; discard. Refrigerate remaining stock in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.