Saturday, February 11, 2017
Chicken and Dumplings
Then I remembered that, when I was recovering from jaw surgery years ago, I ate a whole Baker's Square pot pie without chewing. Moment of pride that I hadn't choked on it; I was really hungry. I've already posted a pot pie here, but chicken and dumplings is similar and I've never made that.
A quick search found that you don't normally put veggies in the stew. If you do, it's more like a pot pie filling. Since I can't really chew crisp veggies right now, I decided to skip tradition and simmer them in the pot and serve the whole thing kind of like a stew/soup.
I'm starting with this recipe as one being on the Southern side. I'm changing up a couple of things. By cooking the chicken in the final water, you can cut the amount of broth in half, which cuts the added salt in half. It's just the difference between using roasted versus braised chicken. If you simmer with the bones and skin, it won't have that dry and pasty texture. Or, you could go the quickie route and use canned chicken. I can guarantee you that's what places like Cracker Barrel use.
1 quart unsalted chicken stock
2 lbs skin-on, bone-in chicken pieces
*1/2 C diced onion
*1/2 C diced celery
1 Tb margarine, plus 2 more Tb later
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
*1 C frozen peas
2 C flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 C milk
salt and pepper to taste
1. In a large saucepan or stock pot, melt butter over medium heat. Sauté onions and celery until softened. Place chicken pieces skin-side down and cook until slightly browned, about 3 minutes.
2. Add stock to the pot. If it doesn't almost cover the chicken pieces, the pot's too big. Add water until pieces are barely submerged. Bring to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook until pieces are done, turning over after half an hour to make sure they are thoroughly cooked. It should take about 40-50 minutes.
5. Bring pot back up to a low boil and start adding the dumplings. Stir after every layer goes in to distribute them. Once all of them are in, lower the heat, cover, and simmer another 15 minutes, until everything is thickened. You can wash the cutting board and bowl, so the dishes will be almost done before dinner.
6. Ladle into bowls while hot and serve immediately. If you have leftovers, they're going to look like condensed soup the next day. A little water and a couple of minutes in the microwave will turn it back into a stew state.
Difficulty rating :)