Chicken Stock

The countdown to Thanksgiving is here. With so much to do on the holiday; why not do some of the cooking now? At Roots to Plate, fresh chicken stock is always a staple and at Thanksgiving you will need quarts of it! So let’s get cooking..


Start by gathering your vegetables. A rough chop is all that is needed. Place them in a large pot. The bigger the pot, the bigger your lot of stock.


Next add your chicken bones. Hopefully, you have saved some bones from previous roasting and frozen them for this special day. Then, cover with water just high enough to cover all of the ingredients. Put the lid on the pot and simmer on low for at least an hour.


After an hour, strain the broth into a bowl and allow to cool. Once the fat layer has formed on the top of the broth: it is ready to be skimmed.

Slowly remove the fat layer from the stock and discard. At this point, the stock can be refrigerated for up to 4 days. You can also freeze the stock in portions and use at a later date.


Shrimp and Cheese Grits

Classic, Southern style, good ol’ comfort food: Shrimp and Grits. First off, know that once you make this recipe: there’s a good chance you will find yourself putting it into your weekly meal rotation. Yes, it’s thatShrimp and Grits good! There’s nothing fussy about this recipe and it can be made in under 20 minutes. Ready to sink into some good comfort food? Let’s get cooking!


1 lb. Medium shrimp, deviened

3 Medium Roma tomatoes, diced

1 Sprig of Spring Onion, diced

1 C. Whole kernel sweet white corn

2 Tbsp. Smoked Paprika

1 tsp. Chili powder

1 C. Instant grits

2 C. Chicken Stock

1 C. Whole Milk

1/2 C. Grated Parmesan and Romano mix

4 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter

1 Tbsp. Flour

1 C. Dry White wine

Start by coating the shrimp liberally in the Paprika, Chili Powder and Flour. Add the shrimp to a frying pan with 1 Tbsp. of the butter. Cook until almost done 2 to 3 minutes. Add in corn and tomatoes and cook 1 minute longer. Slowly pour in the white wine, stirring frequently. Cook an additional 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1 Tbsp butter.

Meanwhile, in a wide mouth pot bring the chicken stock and milk mixture to a simmer. Whisking nearly constantly; slowly pour in grits. Keep your eye on the mixture. Once the grits reach a consistency of cream of wheat- they are done! Now add in the last 2 Tbsp of butter and the grated cheese.

Spoon the grits into a bowl and add the shrimp mixture to the top. Garnish with the fresh spring onions. That’s it- you’re done- enjoy!

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup


Warm and familiar; Chicken Tortilla Soup is a favorite. The beauty of this recipe is its simplicity. As always, fresh ingredients are the key to this rich soup. Do you have time to put ingredients in a crock pot and then walk away? Then you have time for this classic, earthy Chicken Tortilla Soup!


2 Boneless skinless chicken breasts or  5 boneless, skinless, chicken thighs

1 16 ounce can of Hominy

2 Large Haas Avocados

1 Bunch of Cilantro or Celery leaves chopped (for a more mild flavor)

5  C. Quality Chicken Stock

1 Large Sweet Onion

1 small can of Chipotle peppers

1 Tbsp Ground Cumin

2 Tbsp Smoked Paprika

Sour Cream for topping

Tortilla Chips (of course!)

Tortilla Soup Anyone?


Ok so we lied: there is a little bit of chopping here. Start by chopping the onion. Place the onion in a large pot with a bit of butter or olive oil. Saute until slightly browned. Meanwhile, place the peppers with 2 cups of the chicken stock in a blender. Pulse until smooth. Add the sauteed onion, pepper mixture and chicken into a crock pot. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

What to do during this time? Go to work? Nah, catch up on Netflix? Sure…

Next back to the pot that you sauteed the onion in. Laddle the chicken from the crock pot and put into the large pot. At this point, the chicken should be  falling apart. Add the Hominy, Cumin, Paprika, half of the chopped Cilantro or Celery leaves and chicken stock. Cover and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve this soup with chopped avocado, cilantro, sour cream and tortilla chips. Then sit back and enjoy!