Monday, February 9, 2015

Homemade Chicken Bouillon Powder

A few weeks ago, I came up with an idea that sparked some interest on Facebook.  I wanted to make some "ramen noodles" that are healthy, not full of added chemicals and toxins.  So I went to work on trying to figure out a good dry pasta recipe that resembles Chinese noodles or Ramen noodles and a way to make dry chicken broth powder.

I'm going to break this into 2 posts so it won't get too painfully long.  Part one is the chicken bouillon recipe I came up with which turned out FABULOUS!  I am very pleased with the results and have been using this in tons of recipes.  The second part will be about the noodles I discovered how to make - Chinese Alkaline Noodles, AKA Ramen noodles.  They were also very good and we have now used them to make Lo Mein as well and my husband commented that it tasted like restaurant quality.  Score!  I'll go into details on how I threw that dish together too in the Ramen Noodle post.

Now on to the Chicken Bouillon Powder.  Bear with me... there are a lot of steps that can be time consuming BUT I promise it is worth it and you will be able to turn 4-6 cups of chicken stock into 50 CUPS of broth when you add a tsp of the final powder to 1 cup of hot water.  I used two different recipes/techniques to get my final product.  I referenced the original recipes in case you would prefer to try one of them instead!  

To Make Dehydrated Stock:

The first thing you will need is 2 or 3 quarts of chicken stock that you either made yourself, or you can purchase organic stock from a grocery store.  I used 2 and half quarts because that is what I had on hand.  It doesn't really matter.  The end result will just have a little more or less chicken flavor.  In a pot, pour the stock in and let it simmer.  Forever.  I mean I let mine come to a boil and then simmer for about 3 hours.  You want the liquid to be a lovely caramel color.  Do not worry if it feels like you are boiling away everything - it boils down to a very small amount.  I would say it's about a cup or less after all is said and done.  I followed the directions for bouillon cubes from A Return to Simplicity blog.  Except I had no intention of making cubes and took it a step further.

Once I boiled down the stock I placed it in a 9x13 pan lined with parchment paper and put it in the refrigerator to firm up.  It turns into a jello-like texture.  If I were making cubes I would have put it in a smaller dish to make them thick and cut into cubes to freeze.  But I wasn't making cubes.  After it was chilled and firmed up I peeled it off the parchment paper and placed in my dehydrator on my trays used for fruit leathers.  You could also line it with plastic wrap or parchment paper instead.  If you do not do this step you will end up with all of your precious stock in a puddle at the bottom of your dehydrator!  It took about 24 hours to completely dry it out.  
Now the easy step... use a mortar and pestle to grind the dried stock into a powder.  Now you have stock powder!  At this point, I had about 2 tbsp of powder or 6 tsp.  I told you there were a lot of steps.  You're half way there.

To Make the Bouillon Powder:

Combine the following ingredients in a blender or food processor.  Once powdered, store in a mason jar:

1 cup nutritional yeast (Found at most health food stores)
2 1/2 tbsp onion powder
2 tbsp dehydrated chicken stock
2 tbsp sea salt
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/4 ground sage

Use 1 tsp per cup of water in any recipe you would use chicken broth.
Check in next week to learn how to make your very own Chinese Noodles... aka Alkaline Noodles... aka Ramen Noodles!

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