My Basic Chicken Stock

Chicken stock is my basic necessity, even for normal cooking. I will always have supply of frozen stock in my freezer. It is also very useful for quick meals for busy mothers. You will find that I frequently mention chicken stock as an ingredient in my recipes.


1 whole chicken, de-skinned, and fat removed.

4 slices ginger

2-3 pieces dried abalone


1. Boil a pot of water and place chicken in for 2-3 minutes when the water is boiling.

2. Remove chicken and rinse off scum. Pour away the water.

3. Put all the ingredients in a crockpot, fill with water until all ingredients covered, and cook on low or Auto overnight.

4. Discard chicken, ginger and abalone. Skim off oil, if necessary.

5. Freeze for future use.



In your normal cooking, instead of using MSG or lots of pre-mixes, bullion cubes, stock powder, to enhance flavour, you can simply add some stock instead.


Using the Thermal Pot

Using the inner pot, do the same Steps 1 & 2.

3. Put ingredients back into the inner pot with enough water to cover all the ingredients. Cover with lid and bring to a boil. You can either turn the fire down to low and let the stock simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or immediately turn off the fire and place the inner pot (covered!) into the outer pot.


**Do NOT pour the content into the outer pot. (One of my ex-maids did this!) In other words, you are cooking with BOTH the inner and outer pot. Obviously, the inner pot should be placed within the outer pot.

Take note that there is little water loss through evaporation when you use the thermal pot, so you have to reduce the amount of water used so that the stock won’t be too diluted. This is the same if you use the thermal pot to cook stew.

4. Leave the thermal pot alone for half a day or overnight. When you are ready to use the stock, take the inner pot out of the outer pot. Continue with Steps 4 & 5 as above.


More Tips

1. Whenever I shuck corn, I keep the cob and cook it in the stock to give the stock added sweetness. If I do not have immediate use for the cob, I would wrap it in clingwrap and freeze it until a stock-making day.

2. Similarly, if I happened to have some leftover leek parts that I cut away cos they are too old and tough, I would clean them and throw into the stock pot as well.

3. Basically, if you have some veggies in the fridge which you know you are not going to use soon, and they will spoil if you don’t use them, or they are not good enough to be used on their own but good enough still to be used in stock, don’t throw them away. Use them in your stock to enhance flavour.


Over-The-Stove Method

Basically follow the same steps, except you leave the stock to simmer (pot covered) over a low fire on the stove for about 4 hours. 4 hours is an estimated time. It all depends on how big your chicken is, how much water you use, etc. I give this 4 hour estimation as a guideline based on how long we typically cook Chinese slow cook soups. Never add water in between. If you find your stock drying out quickly, lower the fire and reduce cooking time.