Friday, November 27, 2009

Chicken and Dumplings

A few weeks ago, one of my friends, Danni, got appendicitis. A group of us went down to visit her in the hospital. It was fairly late, our bus wasn't arriving for another 45 minutes and we were starving so we headed down to the hospital food service area. They had some soup and dumplings. Personally I only got a single dumpling and some gravy which fetched an odd look from our cashier. The dumpling was split between 3 people and was so yummy that I just had to go back for more. Who would have known a lump of dough could be so tasty?

For Chicken Soup
  • cooked chicken carcass 
  • 1/2 onion, roughly chopped
  • 5 cups boiling water
  • 2 celery stalks, 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 large carrot, 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 t dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
For Dumplings
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 T baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 c milk
  1. In a large saucepan, start heating up the chicken pieces, letting it get aromatic along with the onions. Cook for about 5 minutes, the onions don't have to be soft yet.
  2. Add the 5 cups of water to the chicken, and celery, carrots,  thyme and salt and pepper. Simmer for at least 30 minutes. 
  3. While the stock is cooking, start making the dumpling dough. Mix all the dry ingredients together, and then the butter, and slowly mix in the milk until it forms a dough. Knead the dough maybe 8 times. Form the dough into 1.5 inch diameter balls. Set aside.
  4. When the broth has finished simmering, fish out the chicken carcass pieces. Pick off any remaining meat and place in the broth. The broth should still have onion, carrot, and celery pieces.
  5. Place the dough balls into the simmering water and place a lid on the pan. Do not open for at least 15 minutes as the dough is cooking in the steam. When the dumplings are ready they should float to the top, enlarged and fluffy. Check to make sure the insides are cooked by inserting a toothpick. If they are not done, cook for another 5-10 minutes with the lid on.
  6. When the dumplings are ready, serve the soup and dumplings together immediately.

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