• Chicken and Dumplings

    Maybe it was incorrectly thinking that chicken and dumplings was loaded with cream or canned cream soups or the fear of screwing up the dumplings, but I have always shied away from making it.  After feeling the need for hearty comfort food, I took the plunge and tried Martha’s recipe.  Not only was it delicious, but it was so incredibly easy to make thanks to a very pleasing ingredient list.  I used homemade chicken broth which personally I think makes a huge difference in most dishes.  Make it a vegetarian dish by replacing the chicken with seitan and the broth with vegetable broth.  Make it vegan by swapping out the butter and milk with your favorite substitutes. Take the plunge!  You’ll be glad you did.

    Chicken and Dumplings – from Martha Stewart

    Ingredients:

    • 3 Tbsp butter
    • 1 medium onion, cut into 1 inch pieces
    • 5 medium carrots, cut crosswise into 1 1/2 inch pieces
    • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
    • 1 cup (spooned and leveled) all-purpose flour (I have used whole wheat and regular with equal results) – 1/4 cup is for the soup, the other 3/4 is for the dumplings
    • 1 can (14.5 ounces) reduced sodium chicken broth (but I suggest homemade)
    • salt and pepper
    • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2 inch pieces
    • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen peas

    For the dumplings:

    • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh dill, or 3/4 teaspoon dried dill weed
    • 1 3/4 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons milk
    • (plus the flour noted above)

    Directions:

    1.  In a Dutch oven (or a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid), heat butter over medium. Add onion, carrots, and thyme. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add ¼ cup flour and cook, stirring, 30 seconds. Add broth and bring to a boil, stirring constantly; season with salt and pepper. Nestle chicken in pot; reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, 20 minutes.

    2.  Meanwhile, make dumplings: In a medium bowl, whisk together remaining ¾ cup flour, dill, baking powder, and ½ teaspoon salt. With a fork, gradually stir in ½ cup milk to form a moist and soft batter. It should be just a little thicker than pancake batter and should easily drop from the tip of a spoon. (Add additional 2 tablespoons milk if too thick.) Set aside.

    3.  Stir peas into pot. Drop batter in simmering liquid in 10 heaping tablespoonfuls, keeping them spaced apart (dumplings will swell as they cook). Cover, and simmer until chicken is tender and dumplings are firm, 20 minutes. Serve.

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