Reasons Why Your Stock Won’t Gel
1.The stock rolled at too high a temperature. If stock is simmered too high, the heat will break down and destroy the collagen. To see what the perfect simmer on your stock should look like, see my short video on the subject by clicking here:
2.The stock did not roll long enough. Once you get that perfect simmer or “roll” going, be sure that chicken stock rolls for 6-24 hours and beef stock for 12-50 hours. Less than that will likely not draw enough gelatin into the stock from the bones.
3.Not enough of the right kind of bones were used that yield gelatin. To get the right mix of bones that yield gelatin versus other types of bones that add flavor and color, make sure you use one of the following methods: 1 whole, free range layer hen with neck and wings cut up, 3-4 lbs of boney chicken parts which includes a combo of necks, backs, and wings, OR the picked carcass of 2 meat chickens. For beef stock, use about 7 lbs bones total (4 lbs of boney bones and 3 lbs of meaty bones).
4.Too much water was used in proportion to the bones. For chickens, the correct proportion is 3-4 lbs of bones per 4 quarts of filtered water. For beef stock, the correct proportion is 7 lbs of bones per 4 quarts of water or more to cover.
5.Using bones from battery chickens or chickens raised in cages. Conventionally raised chickens or chickens raised in cages typically yield little to no gelatin. It is worth the extra money to get quality when you buy meat especially if you will be using those bones to make stock.
To get additional gelatin, adding a chicken head and/or 2 feet to the stockpot will add even more! If your chicken is a rooster, add the comb. This will also add gelatin along with testosterone to the stock which adult men may find appealing as testosterone levels tend to decline with age.