It’s fall. The leaves are changing, the thunderstorms are starting, and my nose is running.
Time for some good, stick-to-your-ribs Chicken and Dumplings soup.
To give you some background, I wasn’t raised eating this fantastic soup. I was raised on Chicken Noodle, sometimes homemade but mainly from a packet or can. So when I got in my mind that I wanted to make Chicken and Dumplings from scratch, I wanted to do it right.
One of my favorite food bloggers, Bree Drummond aka The Pioneer Woman, came out with her adapted version of a Gourmet Magazine recipe. I further adapted it to suit me, which just shows you the chain of bastardization and recipes on the internetz. Oh, the internetz.
“Kicking that Cold fast” Chicken and Dumplings:
- 1 stick of salted Butter
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1/2 cup All-purpose Flour
- 1 whole Chicken, Cut Into Pieces OR 5 Chicken Leg Quarters (Precut, in a pack)
- Salt And Pepper
- 1/2 cup Finely Diced Carrots
- 1/2 cup Finely Diced Celery
- 1 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced (I prefer red onions, adds sweetness.)
- 1 lb super small fingerling red potatoes (any color of fingerling will do)
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon Turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried Tarragon
- 6 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth (or I used 2 32oz. boxes)
- 1/2 cup Apple Cider (uncarbonated, in the plastic bottle)
- 1/2 cup Heavy Cream (weird but YUM)
- 1-1/2 cup All-purpose Flour (you can add more if you think your mix is too wet)
- 1/2 cup Yellow Cornmeal
- 1 Tablespoon (heaping) Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1-1/2 cup Half-and-half
- 2 Tablespoons Minced Fresh Parsley (optional)
- Salt As Needed
NOTE: To achieve the best flavor, let the broth simmer continuously AND remember to add just a little bit more salt every step of the way. Seasonings are your friend when it comes to working with large amounts of liquids in broths or soups, especially if you opted for the low/reduced sodium chicken broth as your base.
Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper, then dredge both sides in flour.
Melt butter in a pot over medium-high heat. In two or three batches, brown chicken on both sides and remove to a clean plate. (All depends on the size of your pot and how large your chicken pieces are.)
NOTE: I used a heavy duty dutch oven pot, which sealed the heat in and gave me a great non-stick surface to cultivate the chicken flavor. I highly recommend using a pot you’re comfortable with, because you can’t change in the middle of the process.
In the same pot, add diced onion, carrots, and celery (In case you were wondering, this infamous flavor trio is called mirepoix.) Stir and cook for 3 to 4 minutes over medium-low heat. Stir in ground thyme, turmeric, and tarragon, then pour in chicken broth and apple cider. Stir to combine, then add browned chicken. Cover pot and simmer for 20 minutes.
While chicken is simmering, make the dough for the dumplings: sift together all dry ingredients, then add half-and-half, stirring gently to combine. Set aside. (Here is where you use your best judgement if you need to add more flour OR more liquids. For best density, use new AP flour.)
Remove chicken from pot and set aside on a plate. Use two forks to remove chicken from the bone. Shred, then add chicken to the pot. Pour heavy cream into the pot and stir to combine. (Add your quartered small fingerling potatoes here. The simmering will cook them rather quickly without absorbing too much broth.)
Drop tablespoons of dumpling dough into the simmering pot. Add minced parsley if using. Cover pot halfway and continue to simmer for 15 minutes. Check seasonings; add salt if needed. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.
The soup is amazing, definitely what I needed. (I had two full servings, with a total of four huge dumplings.)
Hope you enjoy it too.
Thank and happy eats,