Dark Chicken Stock
(recipe, Nancy Oakes, Pamela Mazzola, Lisa Weiss)
Dark chicken stock is the workhorse of our kitchen, and having some in your fridge is like money in the bank. Actually it's a double chicken stock, meaning that we use a light chicken stock instead of water for simmering the roasted chicken bones. We also cook the stock in the oven instead of on the stove top, which allows the surface of the stock to caramelize further, so it becomes even richer, darker, and more complex. For our recipe testing we used an extra-large roasting pan. If you don't have one, any large-capacity pot with a generous surface area will do (as long as it will fit in your oven and hold all the wings and liquid, of course). If you can't fit all the bones in one layer, use 2 rimmed baking sheets for roasting. You could also make the stock on top of the stove, but it won't become as dark or as rich. A convection oven, if you have one, will roast the bones much more quickly and evenly.
- 4 Tbsp. flavorless vegetable oil
- 5 lb. chicken wings
- 1 small carrot, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 celery rib, coarsely chopped
- 1 large onion, cut into eighths
- 12 cups Light Chicken Stock
- Preheat the oven to 450°F. Put 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, deep roasting pan (see note above) and spread the chicken wings in one layer. Roast, turning once or twice, for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the wings are golden brown and crispy on all sides. Toss the carrot, celery, and onion in a bowl with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, then add to the wings in the pan. Roast, turning once or twice with a spatula, for 30 to 45 minutes more, or until the vegetables are golden. Carefully add the stock to the roasting pan, scraping up all the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Decrease the oven temperature to 375°F and cook, stirring several times, until the chicken is falling off the bone and the stock is dark brown. Remove the pan from the oven and strain the stock through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl or container, pressing on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Let cool completely and skim off the fat and discard. Refrigerate for up to 4 days, then bring back to a boil and refrigerate for 2 more days, or freeze for up to 2 months in small containers.