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Beneficial bone broth

Extra parts yield extra product for farming team

Kathleen and Lane Butler didn’t start out as farmers. She was a teacher, he’s an engineer at Lockheed Martin in Lexington. But after purchasing land in Bourbon County, and meeting livestock farmer Daniel Pike in 2016, the Butlers—Clark Energy Cooperative members—have started raising thousands of chickens on certified organic pasture to sell through buying clubs and, with Pike, to restaurants, including Vinaigrette Salad Kitchen in Lexington.

Supplying the restaurants leaves the partners with extra parts—drumsticks, wings and backs in particular. Working with a chef, Pike has begun a business making bone broth to package and sell wholesale to chefs and

Lane and Kathleen Butler

retailers under the brand Pike Valley Farm, and Kathleen is in charge of marketing.

Bone broth has become popular for its perceived health benefits and great flavor. Kathleen is a believer. She credits her easy recovery from her third pregnancy—all C-sections—to bone broth consumption.  “I actually have digestive issues,” she says, “and when I keep up with bone broth, I hardly have any symptoms.”

In addition, she says, bone broth makes full use of a whole chicken, cutting down on waste. If you roast a chicken or turkey, you can make a full pot of bone broth from the carcass after the meat has been eaten. Cut up a whole chicken, and you can put the wing tips, back and neck into a pot and simmer it to make broth, creating a soup base or restorative drink.

For more information on where to find bone broth in stores, contact Kathleen at or go to

Kathleen Butler’s Bone Broth recipe


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Bone up on bone broth

Bone broth can be made with uncooked or browned bones. Browning will give the broth more color and a different flavor. When bones are simmered on low heat for a long time, collagen and bone marrow are released into the liquid. Depending on the amount of collagen to liquid, the broth can resemble Jell-O once it is refrigerated. That’s a good thing! Don’t be alarmed, it will become liquid again upon heating.

Bone broth can be made with all types of bones, and a mixture of pastured or grass-fed bones. It can be seasoned with flavors that appeal to you, including all members of the onion family, fresh and dried herbs, spices, salt and pepper.

To make a bone broth with the leftovers of roasted poultry, remove meat from the carcass and refrigerate or freeze. Use a pot big enough to hold the whole carcass, or cut the carcass into pieces to fit a smaller pot. Place the carcass in the pot and cover with water (or fill the pot – don’t worry if a few bones jut out). Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer on low for 12 to 24 hours.

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