Here's how to make a basic stock: Start with your basic mire poix, add garlic, any kind of bones (chicken, pork, fish, beef, veal, lamb), cold water, black peppercorns and the bouquet garni of your choice (that's a bundle of herbs tied together with kitchen twine or wrapped in cheesecloth). Sweat the veggies in a large pot and cover. When translucent, add bones (trimmed of excess fat). For a darker stock, roast the veggies and bones on a sheet pan in the oven before adding to the stock pot. Put the bones and veggies in a pot and cover with cold water (not warm or hot - this will ruin your stock). There should be about 2 inches of water above the level of the ingredients. The higher the ratio of solids to liquid, the more flavorful the stock. Add the bouquet garni and peppercorns, then heat on high until it boils. Reduce heat to a simmer. Chicken stocks cook about 3.5 hours. Veggie stocks cook about 45 minutes. For veal, beef, pork or lamb, cook 6 to 8 hours. Skim fat off the top periodically. Taste and season accordingly and strain into an appropriate container.
Spike works as the chef de cuisine at Tribeca's new hotspot restaurant, Mai House, owned by the renowned restaurateur Drew Nieporent. Mai House was named as one of the New York Times' top ten best new restaurants of 2007. Born in Montreal, Canada and trained in classic French cuisine in restaurants around the world. Spike has worked with Gerard Boyer at Les Crayeres, Thomas Keller at Bouchon and The Maccioni Family at Le Cirque. Spike believes in learning the basics to become the best. His latest venture is opening a new chain, Good Stuff Eatery, with his family (first location opening in Washington D.C. later this year) The new restaurant features his weaknesses -- hamburgers, hot dogs, fries and milkshakes.