Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

Chicken and Dumplings are practically a southern staple. A few years ago I found a recipe that was quick & easy and that our family really liked. However, it is full of low fat "cream of" soups, and uses refrigerated biscuit dough. I've decided to rework the recipe to be REAL food friendly. It will require a few more moments of hands-on time, but the result will be worth it! I've shared this on Real Food Wednesday and Fightback Friday

Chicken & Dumplings
6 c. chicken broth
3 c. shredded, cooked chicken
1 1/2 c. cream of (whatever kind you want, chicken, celery) soup (see recipe for homemade below)
1/4 tsp poultry seasoning
Thinly sliced carrots & celery to taste
biscuit dough (see recipe below)

Stir together all ingredients except biscuits in dutch oven over med-high heat, and bring to boil.
Reduce heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes.
Return mixture to a boil.
At this point you can either drop small balls of dough in the simmering pot or roll biscuits very thin (1/8") and slice into strips. I've done it both ways and either works well. I prefer really small drops/slices because I like my dumplings to almost melt in my mouth. You can make them larger if you prefer.
Return to simmer and simmer 10 minutes. It can be a bit soupy at this point. The longer it sits the thicker it becomes. It is really good as leftovers as well.

Homemade "cream of" soup substitute
4 Tbl. butter
4 Tbl. flour
1/2 c. whole milk (I'm sure cream would be even better)
1/2 c. chicken broth
Salt & pepper to taste

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir in flour; keep stirring until smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat and add the chicken broth and milk, a little at a time, stirring to keep smooth. Return to heat. Bring sauce to a gentle boil; cook, stirring constantly, until it thickens. Taste and add salt and pepper, as needed to taste.

See this post about other variations of homemade "cream of" soups

Homemade Biscuits (courtesy of Old Fashioned Living)
2 c. sifted flour (I must admit I do use all-purpose)
2 tsp. baking powder
4 Tbl. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 c. whole milk

Sift flour once, measure, add other dry ingredients, and sift again. Cut in butter. Add milk, gradually, stirring until soft dough is formed.
If baking, roll to 1/2" thickness and cut with 2" biscuit cutter. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 400*F for 12-15 minutes. Yields 12 biscuits.

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