Happy to share this guest post from our friend Trent at @StoreBoughtIsFine. We're thrilled he loves our Clear Plastic Containers as much as we do. Use code CONTAINER20 for 20% Off all containers September 22nd - 24th.
To be honest, when I received my set of Cassandra's Kitchen Clear Plastic Containers I wasn't sure how useful they’d really be. I mean, my cupboards overflowed with mismatched Tupperware that worked well enough to store my leftovers. I unpacked them and stacked them neatly next to the rest of the containers with little enthusiasm. Slowly but surely, over the next six months, I found more and more uses for them - so many that I had to reach out to CK to repent for my doubting ways, rave about these plastic miracle containers, and ask for a few more. Now, they’re one of my favorite things in the kitchen – something I never knew I needed. They actually make me happy every time I reach for them (just like my hand-held citrus juicer).
With cooler weather already starting to creep in, I thought I'd put these containers to Ina's favorite use: storing and freezing homemade chicken stock. The frozen stock will come in handy as warm soup season gears up!
Ina’s chicken stock has the distinct honor of being featured in multiple Barefoot Contessa cookbook. I'd resisted making it until now for two reasons, 1 - I don't have a 16-20 quart stock pot (it'd have to double as a seat in our small apartment) and 2 - The idea of tossing three whole chickens in the trash once the stock is done leaves me feeling guilty.
I solved the first problem, by cutting the recipe in half to fit in my 8-quart stock pot. The second issue I wasn't so lucky. I had the best intentions of trying to turn the chicken into a curried chicken salad (to add flavor and moisture) but it didn't turn out great - it was edible but not one of my best. BUT I did have 3 quarts of what many have referred to as Ina's 'liquid gold'! Check out the famous recipe below.
Yes, these are Ina's go-to containers for freezing chicken stock, but I’ve found that they come in handy for all kinds of storage:
Cupboards: Prior to using these containers our cupboard was a mashup of half-used boxes and bags haphazardly thrown in (I can organize ... but keeping things organized, not so much). These containers have done wonders for helping us clean up (and keep tidy) the limited cupboard space. We've eliminated the boxes and bags of rice, noodle, nuts, grains, and beans by storing them in these easily-stack-able, easy to label containers.
I love that they come in 3 sizes (8oz, 16oz and 32oz) but share the same size lids - making them easily stack-able with a small footprint in my cupboard. And they're an inexpensive alternative to Tupperware.
Commuting: With the amount of cooking I do, I pack my lunch most days. The food has to contend with 40 minutes of jostling in my tote as I make my way through New York City streets and subway. Inevitably, my traditional square Tupperware flips sideways and leaks (or worse, completely opens, soaking all my magazines and papers with a rich, delicious beef stew - a smell I swear still emanates from the bag years later.) Since getting these containers, I have yet to have one open or leak in my bag. They seal tightly - something I'm thankful for every time I travel with soup!
Prepared Food: While I still store many of my leftovers in glass containers – so I can easily pop them in the microwave to reheat - I've found myself using these containers to store leftovers that don't need reheating. And, of course, they're perfect for freezing leftovers and stock for later use. Over that past 9 months, I haven't had any of these crack or break after being frozen.
If you've had your doubts, now is the time to try them because it's Cassandra's Kitchen's Annual Container Sale, September 22-24! You can take an additional 20% off with code CONTAINER20
You can thank me later.
Ina's Homemade Chicken Stock
3 (5-pound) roasting chickens
3 large yellow onions, unpeeled and quartered
6 carrots, unpeeled and halved crosswise
4 celery stalks with leaves, cut into thirds crosswise
4 parsnips, unpeeled and halved crosswise
20 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
15 sprigs fresh thyme
20 sprigs fresh dill
1 head garlic, unpeeled and cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns (not ground)
Place the chickens, onions, carrots, celery, parsnips, parsley, thyme, dill, garlic, salt, and peppercorns in a 16- to 20-quart stockpot. Add 7 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer uncovered for 4 hours, skimming off any foam that comes to the top. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Strain the entire contents of the pot through a colander and discard the solids.
Copyright 2014, Make It Ahead by Ina Garten, Clarkson Potter/Publishers, All Rights Reserved