Chicken stock comparison

Joined Sep 21, 2010
Thought you might be interested in this comparison of chicken stock!

Two methods of cooking, and slightly different ingredients. Both taste really good & rich, but again, a little different. The lighter-coloured stock tastes 'cleaner' and actually stronger than the darker stock, maybe because of the pressure cooker.

The one on the left was from a whole stewing hen simmered on the stovetop with carrots, celery, onion.  Nothing was roasted or browned before going into the pot.

The stock on the right was made from 3 pounds of backs, necks, whatever breast bits were attached to the backs and a handful of the bones from the stewed chicken carcass. (I get the parts from a big Chinese grocery, they butcher the cuts differently from western butchers).  I browned everything before dropping in the pressure cooker. No veg except for green leaves from two leeks.

I would have expected the stock from the roasted chicken parts to be darker, but it's much lighter in colour. And deeper flavour.

Don't usually make two batches of broth at a time two different ways, but such a good sale, maybe for Lunar New Year (aka Chinese New Year). They also had duck bones/parts on sale, should have tried those, too!

Joined Sep 5, 2008
From color alone, I would have expected the one on the left to contain the green leek leaves, and the one on the right to not have any! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/eek.gif
Joined Jan 15, 2017
I agree with French Fries. The stock on the left looks very very GREEN for a traditional chic stock simmered on the stove.

I guess I'm old school. My stocks are cooked stove top. I also don't throw in every scrap in the kitchen like some chefs do. I feel its extremely important that your stocks are consistent in flavor to ensure your dishes are consistent. 

I have worked with chefs that throw everything in the pot throughout the day and to me, it make for terrible inconsistent stocks. 

Chix stock base

chic bones/necks/backs (raw)




Fresh thyme

Parsley stems

Black peppercorns

Bay leaf

From this I can add items to customize the flavor. IE garlic, other herbs, mushrooms, roast the bones etc. all depends what flavors I'm looking for.
Joined Oct 23, 2008
You mentioned onions in the batch on the left, if they were red onions that is most likely your culprit. The pigment in red onions will turn green in an alkaline environment. You can google it for a little more information.
Joined Sep 21, 2010
Interesting about the red onion but no, ordinary yellow onion. I didn't leave the skin on, either. I've made both batches into soup. The pressure cooker broth definitely tastes better, so I'll use that method more often.

(so a pinch of baking soda would turn red onion greenish?)
Joined Sep 5, 2008
(so a pinch of baking soda would turn red onion greenish?)
Blueish to greenish, kinda, yes. Same with red cabbage. I normally add a little acid when cooking red onions or red cabbage, to avoid any discoloration (and to reveal the bright red/purple color). 

Here's some red cabbage in baking soda (here it's used to dye yarn).

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