You can make homemade any time you have leftover chicken bones on hand. Use it immediately or freeze it in small containers to use later on.
1 whole chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds), rinsed, giblets removed
1 head garlic, cut horizontally in half
1-2 yellow onions, quartered
2 carrots, quartered
2 celery stalks, quartered
6-8 sprigs fresh thyme
8-10 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1. Place chicken and vegetables in a large stockpot over medium heat. Pour in enough cold water to just cover everything. Add thyme, parsley, bay leaves and peppercorns and bring to a boil over medium heat. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer for 1- 1 1/2 hours, loosely covered, until chicken is done. As it cooks, remove and discard any surface impurities. Add more water if necessary to keep chicken covered while simmering.
2. When chicken is done, transfer to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, remove and discard skin and bones and transfer meat to a separate container.
3. Strain stock into another pot and discard vegetables. Use immediately or refrigerate overnight. Skim off surface impurities and store in containers (or freeze for later use, up to 2 months).
Makes 2 quarts.