Chicken Broth for Tortellini (Brodo di Pollo)

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and so today everyone across the States is stirring up their favorite dishes to serve to loved ones and guests with a sprinkle of love. For us, each holiday is time for our Italian-American family tradition: to prepare thousands of little tortellini by hand and make a home-made ‘brodo’ or broth in which to gently place the tortellini to swim seductively. This broth is served in the Italian region of my family, Emiglia-Romagna, where the recipe for it and tortellini have their beginnings.
This is my family recipe that I’ll share with each of you today for the broth; the recipe and the step-by-step instructions for the little tortellini pasta was posted in my archives this past winter on January 7th, 2009. Today I’ll include the step-by-step procedure for the broth, which I didn’t include last year.
So let’s get to the stove!
Brodo di Pollo (Chicken Broth)
Here’s what you’ll need to make the broth:
One 6-pound chicken (hen)
1 package (beef) soup bones (if you can get them)
1 4-pound beef roast
3 carrots, cut in 3′s
1 large onion, cut in 1/4′s
3 celery stalks with leaves, cut into thirds
1/4 bunch of Italian parsley, chopped

Here’s what you need to do to prepare the broth:

Give that chicken a nice bath (clean it) and empty the contents of the cavity inside.

Cut up into large pieces so that it cooks a little bit faster than if you cook it whole.

Cut up all of your veggies.
Cut your beef roast up into about 2 or 3 large sections.
Fill a LARGE deep pot half way full of water.
Make sure that you have enough room from the top of the pot to put the rest of the ingredients in without overflowing the water.
Put all of the ingredients into the pot of water.

I cut fresh Italian parsley from my garden just minutes before chopping it up and putting it into the pot… is fresh, fresh, fresh! (You can see the nearly bare trees behind the garden, the rosemary is next to the parsley, and there is STILL rhubarb growing to the right of the parsley!

Oh my goodness, fresh Italian parsley in November! Seriously? What a surprise and JOY!

PLOP. . . in goes that fresh parsley! Flavor up that broth now!
Bring up the heat to high and get it to a low, rolling boil.
Immediately lower the heat and simmer until the beef is tender.
During this simmer, continually remove the junky stuff that rises to the top with a strainer.
The cooking on simmer and straining process takes about 2 – 3 hours.


Take all of the ingredients out of the broth with a hand strainer.
With very thin tea towels covering a colander/strainer, pour the broth through them into another pot……this is a lot of work and usually needs two people to do this.
Be careful, the broth is very hot while you do this!
Continue to strain the broth into clean tea towels about two more times until the broth is completely clear and free of any ingredient remains.
Taste, add more salt to taste.
If you make this the night before, refrigerate it, and then the next day, skim off any fat/grease from the top (it will solidify in the frig and be very easy to remove).


Afterwards, use this fresh broth for your any of your favorite recipes that call for chicken broth. Again, as I mentioned previously, we make this every holiday and add our home-made, hand-twisted tortellini to it).
I send you all the kindest wishes on this American holiday of gratitude. You do not know how grateful I am for each of you loyal readers and all my new friends too! You have enhanced my life beyond words of expression. May God Bless each of you!
Your comments make me smile and I promise to get back to you. I may be slow at it because I get easily distracted by something brewing in the kitchen or hummingbirds in my gardens.

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog today! If you’ve enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to my blog to receive e-mail notices of any new posts and recipes! I would love to follow your site back as well!

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  1. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We sure did. I don’t know why, but this only just showed up in my reader today (Friday) and only just a moment ago.

    I love homemade stock and broth, you just cannot beat it and it is so worth the time. I’ll bet that tortellini is wonderful too!

  2. Hi Roz this broth looks heavenly hope you had a wonderful thanksgiving


  3. What a great chicken broth! Roz happy thanksgiving.

  4. The parsley and rosemary are beautiful!

  5. Hey Roz, I too just received this. Tortellini in homemade broth is so soothing and delicious. Hope you had a happy turkey day.

  6. Your broth looks so flavorful. I love the photos from your garden.
    Hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

  7. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Your broth sounds so flavorful and comforting. I would love to warm up with a bowl right now!

  8. How funny! I just posted my herb garden, too! Your herbs are just lovely. There is nothing like homemade stock. I made 8 quarts of turkey stock. I’d love to have some homemade tortellini. Yummy!

  9. Your pictures are lovely. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Roz!

  10. one wonderful looking broth

  11. I’m sure you had a beautiful and so blessed Thanksgiving, Roz !
    I wish you a marvelous weekend :D

    The chicken broth is wonderful! Thanks for sharing :)

  12. I cannot live without my homemade broth. The turkey was not at my house this year so won’t be making it this time. Love your blog, too!

  13. Sounds yummy! Happy SITS Saturday share fest!

  14. I’m so jealous of your herb garden. Someday, when I’m no longer a student or living in a rental property, I will have just crap loads of basil and mint growing all over the place!

    Thanks for visiting!

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  16. Great chicken broth. Your pictures are fantastic!

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