So this slug thing is a mental and physical feedback loop. The slug cycle can start with either trigger. If I’m feeling mentally sluggish, I will start slowing down physically and vice versa. The physical tends to depend on what I’m eating and how I’m exercising. If I’m eating delicious food, I will perk up both physically and mentally. Delicious is difficult to define. There are so many things that can qualify. When I’m in a good place, delicious tends to lean healthier with a wide variety of flavors. To keep things going, it is essential to have a well stocked pantry and freezer. This makes it easy to go with cravings or deal with the unexpected. This week that meant the flu. Ick.
But, I had just handled one of the tasks that makes for a very well stocked freezer. Last weekend I made chicken flubber. You may know this is as chicken stock.
I started with some lovely organic chicken necks, feet, and assorted parts from the farmers market. I love it when they sell stock packs. I wanted a rich, dark stock so first I roasted the parts. Then I added them to a stock pot with carrots, onion, garlic, and celery. Add water and simmer for a few hours.
Then remove the solids and strain through some cheesecloth to remove any nasty particulates. The pot of clear stock then goes out on the balcony. Wait, what? Yep, the balcony. Also known as nature’s refrigerator. This time of year it is perfect for dropping the temperature of the hot stock to the safe zone quickly and it won’t raise the temperature of everything else in my fridge. Once cool, it goes into the fridge overnight. In that time, the fat will collect and solidify on top making it very easy to remove. You can save this fabulous fat for future cooking — works great for browning potatoes.
Now comes the flubberization process. Just crank the heat and let the water evaporate out. I usually reduce it to about one-third the volume or so. Chill and voila — flubber. This allows for easy portioning and freezing without having my whole freezer taken up by quarts of stock. Just reconstitute with water if you need regular strength stock or add as is for pan sauces.
Thanks to my flu, this became a nice, easy on the stomach matzo ball soup.