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Such a lot of the meat that we buy today has very little taste attached to it, sadly the animals are force fed and the meat hits the supermarket shelf as soon as the animal has been slaughtered, hence the meat is given no time to hang to gather taste. If I am buying meat for a special occasion then a visit to my local butchers is on the cards, he can provide some good organic meat but it comes at a high price. Like us all I buy chicken and red meat from the supermarket and just hope that I can inject some flavour into it myself. I am sure that most larders are bulging with sauces, granules and bottles of flavouring. Knorr Chicken stock granules are a useful store cupboard staple and they are just slightly different from other stock granules and cubes. Knorr have packed these granules into a tin and then given the tin a plastic lid to keep them airtight. The can holds 150g of the granules, costs about £1.20 and the product is made by Unilever foods .UK. The Knorr chicken granules look like golden coloured gravy granules and they smell pleasant too. They are a mixture of parsley, yeast extract, citric acid, bay leaf, oils, garlic powder, salt, flavourings and the inevitable preservatives. The can states that the granules contain lactose. 100ml of the prepared stock contains just 5 calories. Gravies and soups need a good stock and these Knorr chicken granules can provide a tasty stock. If you put a couple of teaspoons of the granules into a Pyrex jug and add boiling water then that will provide you with stock for gravy, soups or casseroles. The hot steamy stock smells good and as you add the boiling water to the granules you can smell the garlic and herbs straight away. But you can just use the granules to rub into the top of the chicken before you roast it. If you choose to do it that way then as the chicken cooks it develops a rich golden crispy skin that tastes delicious. I par-boil my potatoes before I roast them and I have sprinkled a few granules on top of the par-boiled potatoes after adding the oil ready to roast them. The roast potatoes take on a new dimension, the tops go lovely and crunchy and they taste heavenly. But you will not need to season the potatoes if you sprinkle them with Knorr granules, they are quite salty themselves. I can always get bones from our local butcher and make my own stock and sometimes I still do but on the whole I tend to take the easy way out now. I tried the Knorr Stock Pots and I found that they were good but I feel that they work out more expensive than the granules. Most of us will realise that we are spoilt for choice, our Mothers had to get by with plain flour, seasoning and gravy browning and yet they managed to turn out terrific tasting gravy. We have a whole range of products to help us achieve a good pot of tasty stock and Knorr granules are worth adding to your shopping list. I saw this recipe on the Internet and though that some of the Mums out there might like to try it. Mums Pot Noodle. 70g noodles 1tsp cornflour 1 tsp soy sauce 35g sweetcorn 25g garden peas 50g cooked chicken breast 125ml chicken stock. Cook the noodles and then drain them. Put the stock, peas, sweetcorn, chicken, soy sauce into a saucepan and then simmer it all together for a couple of minutes. Mix the cornflour with a drop of water and then add it to the pan to thicken the liquid. Last of all add the noodles to the pan and stir until they are well heated through. Pop it all into a dish and then serve. Sounds quite good to me ! Apparently the shop bought pot noodles are very high in salt and this recipe is quick and easy and contains a lot less salt.
Stock pots were very popular many years ago and bones, vegetables and odds and ends were continually boiled up to provide the stock for sauces, soups and casseroles, but I am pleased to say life is easier now, and probably healthier when I think about stock pots sitting in warm conditions on the stove for a few days! All we need to do now is crumble a stock cube or as in this case sprinkle on a spoonful of granules. I have an assortment of stock cubes, granules and liquid stock and it depends what I am making as to what I use. I prefer stock cubes for large pots of soup and use 1 or 2 per pot of soup, but when making a stir fry or a white sauce that requires some stock if I need less than ¾pt I tend to use the granules or some liquid stock. The squat round shaped tub is made of metal and has a green plastic lid. It is brightly coloured in yellow and orange with a spoon of the granules being sprinkled onto a chicken dish. There is 150grams in the tub and the nutritional guidelines are given per 100mls made up stock. There is only 5calories per 100mls, and a little amount of sugars, fat and 0.9grams of salt. There are some instructions on the side of the tub, and it is easy to make up into stock. Dissolve 2 teaspoons (9grams) in 450mls of boiling water and use for soup, risotto, casseroles etc. You can also sprinkle the granules on top of chicken before roasting to increase the flavour. The stock granules are made from an assortment of ingredients, but salt is the largest, then lactose from milk and flavour enhancers like Monosodium Glutamate, flavourings and chicken powder and fat, oil, onion powder, yeast extract, dried herbs and spices. You can smell the spices and herbs and also it reminds me of Chicken crisps. The granules are very fine and are natural colour with tiny flecks of green herbs. I often sprinkle the granules straight onto a stir fry and add the liquid later, rather than dirty a jug, because I'm lazy and guess things when I'm cooking! A little added to a white sauce gives it a bit more flavour if using with leftover roast chicken and mushrooms to serve with boiled rice. I also add some when using prawns in white sauce as it blends well with fish too, as it isn't too strong a flavour. When making risotto I usually use a stock cube but if I need extra stock I just sprinkle on some granules from the tub. My tub has a use by date of May 2010, so it has a long shelf life and is therefore a useful commodity in the kitchen cupboard. I think I paid £1.99 for the tub, but it will make about 7.5 litres of stock so quite reasonable, instead of making homemade stock. The only disadvantage that I see is the amount of salt, so care is needed not to add extra salt to the cooking and because of the lactose it isn't suitable for people who can't take milk products.