"frenching up" chicken tamales
Yesterday evening, I essentially followed the guidelines of the shredded chicken recipe in Mexican Cooking Made Easy (WeiChuan Publishing), a side-effect of which is a respectably large pot of chicken stock.
The goal of this was to prepare some chicken for tamales, which I'll make later today (chicken soaking in flavor in the fridge for now, according to my personal preference).
But since I'd wind up with a pot of chicken stock, I decided to go ahead and include mirepoix.
My prediction is that this will not negatively impact the flavor of the tamales in any way, although I expect them to taste at least somewhat different from the intent of the recipe. (I think I can safely say, without fear of violating the intellectual property of this good book, that the recipe called for making the stock from a whole chicken alone, sans seasoning.)
It also called for only a three-pound chicken, and the smallest I could find was 3.9 lbs. I used all for the stock, but set aside about a fourth of it for snacking and general use before seasoning the rest for tamales.
Also, the book didn't specify whether to cut up the chicken prior to tossing in the stock pot, and curiosity drove me to see what would happen if I left it whole. Doing so had no clear negative effect, and I was able to separate skin from meat from bone rapidly.
Fun Fact: At least most technique books from this publisher are multi-lingual, so mind which version you're getting if you buy one. I intentionally sought an English/Spanish version, as those are my languages of choice.