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Chicken and Dumplings--Cook-Off 51


David Ross
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I don't know that I have ever seen drop dumplings here like y'all are talking about--ours are rolled out and cut, like a thick, soft noodle.

Right. I think it's worth noting that there are radically different dumpling traditions. My grandmother, who lived just about the entire twentieth century in Texas, made her dumplings in the unleavened "thick noodle" style. As I recall, they were made with a dough comprised of flour, cracked pepper and some boiling chicken broth from stewing the chicken. The starch from the dumplings was the only thickener. My grandmother's C&D, along with her chicken fried steak, was one of my favorite dishes from the Texas side of the family. I think she made it just about every time she came to visit us in Boston. There was a little milk added to the broth, as I recall.

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Snip

Two roasting chickens, 2 yellow onions, skin on and cut in half, 2 heads garlic cut in half, celery, carrot, rosemary, parsley, thyme, allspice berries, 2 bay leaves, black peppercorns-

gallery_41580_6816_101420.jpg

I'm immensely jealous of your ability to use fresh herbs. While I'm sure both my rosemary and thyme are still quite nice, they're buried under about 2 feet of snow beside my driveway. The local groceries in this small town don't carry fresh stuff, either. I'm going to have to either dig (which isn't very appealing, really) or use dry.

Since the stock is going so well tonight, I'm going to leave it and get up at 6 or so to finish up the process. I want it to have as much flavor as possible. It's at a constant 204 degrees. My stove, though gas, is pretty reliable. Tomorrow I'll ladle it into another pot through a double layer of cheese cloth and my fine mesh strainer and cool to remove the fat, then I'll be simmering it on down and getting it ready for the dumplings.

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The only chicken and dumplings I've ever known were my grandmother's. Elaine Mills Kinsey was born in Canton, Texas in 1902, and lived in the State of Texas every year of her life until she passed in 1999. She was a schoolteacher for her entire professional career. As you may imagine of anyone who grew up and started her teaching career in Texas during those extremely lean and rugged times, she was quite expert at cooking something very good with very little. Her chicken and dumplings, as well as her chicken fried steak, were among a list of dishes for which her versions defined the category in my culinary lexicon. I have neither made nor consumed either one since 1999. Well, now I'm going to start. I'm going to start with chicken and dumplings because, upon reading this thread, I noted any number of recipes made with what appear to be biscuit-like, quenelle-shaped dumplings. Knowing this to be an Abomination before the Lord, I quickly fired off a missive to the paterfamilias of the Kinseys with a request for the Ancestral Chicken and Dumpling Recipe.

Herewith, my grandmother's recipe, in her own words:

Stew a chicken in plenty of water

Strain off about a quart of broth and bring to a boil

Measure 2 cups flour + salt + pepper to taste

Add enough boiling broth to make a soft dough

Knead a few times

Roll out like piecrust

Cut in about 1 inch strips, then into about 3 inch segments

Drop dumplings one at a time in briskly boiling broth

Simmer around 12 minutes

When done, add about 1/2 cup milk + chicken pieces

My father adds that it's important to make sure that the dough is rolled out thinner than you think, as it is easy to have them too thick. He also adds: "I think there is a whole chapter of Leviticus about what the Lord is going to do with anyone who makes chicken-and-dumplings with dropped biscuit-like objects. Not for the faint of heart to contemplate."

I would add that you need to make sure you have a very flavorful chicken.

That's it. No fancy herbs and spices; no onions, carrots or other vegetables; no broth other than what the chicken makes for itself; no leavening; no quenelles; no browning of the dumplings; no bolt of lightning coming down from above to punish chicken and dumpling heresy. :wink: Simple and one of my favorite foods as a child. I hope to make some later this week.

What's amusing (to us anyway) is that my grandmother didn't like chicken. Her very first teaching job, straight out of high school, was all 12 grades in a one-room schoolhouse, to which she transported herself on horseback. Part of her compensation from the town (if you could call it a town) was room and board. But the lady of the house had a habit of undercooking her fried chicken, which put my grandmother off chicken for the rest of her life.

--

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The only chicken and dumplings I've ever known were my grandmother's. Elaine Mills Kinsey was born in Canton, Texas in 1902, and lived in the State of Texas every year of her life until she passed in 1999. She was a schoolteacher for her entire professional career. As you may imagine of anyone who grew up and started her teaching career in Texas during those extremely lean and rugged times, she was quite expert at cooking something very good with very little. Her chicken and dumplings, as well as her chicken fried steak, were among a list of dishes for which her versions defined the category in my culinary lexicon. I have neither made nor consumed either one since 1999. Well, now I'm going to start. I'm going to start with chicken and dumplings because, upon reading this thread, I noted any number of recipes made with what appear to be biscuit-like, quenelle-shaped dumplings. Knowing this to be an Abomination before the Lord, I quickly fired off a missive to the paterfamilias of the Kinseys with a request for the Ancestral Chicken and Dumpling Recipe.

Herewith, my grandmother's recipe, in her own words:

Stew a chicken in plenty of water

Strain off about a quart of broth and bring to a boil

Measure 2 cups flour + salt + pepper to taste

Add enough boiling broth to make a soft dough

Knead a few times

Roll out like piecrust

Cut in about 1 inch strips, then into about 3 inch segments

Drop dumplings one at a time in briskly boiling broth

Simmer around 12 minutes

When done, add about 1/2 cup milk + chicken pieces

My father adds that it's important to make sure that the dough is rolled out thinner than you think, as it is easy to have them too thick. He also adds: "I think there is a whole chapter of Leviticus about what the Lord is going to do with anyone who makes chicken-and-dumplings with dropped biscuit-like objects. Not for the faint of heart to contemplate."

I would add that you need to make sure you have a very flavorful chicken.

That's it. No fancy herbs and spices; no onions, carrots or other vegetables; no broth other than what the chicken makes for itself; no leavening; no quenelles; no browning of the dumplings; no bolt of lightning coming down from above to punish chicken and dumpling heresy. :wink: Simple and one of my favorite foods as a child. I hope to make some later this week.

What's amusing (to us anyway) is that my grandmother didn't like chicken. Her very first teaching job, straight out of high school, was all 12 grades in a one-room schoolhouse, to which she transported herself on horseback. Part of her compensation from the town (if you could call it a town) was room and board. But the lady of the house had a habit of undercooking her fried chicken, which put my grandmother off chicken for the rest of her life.

Well, a big long thank you for this wonderful, gracious story about your dear Grandmother Elaine Mills Kinsey. This is just the type of family memory that in my humble mind speaks to why we love this simple, satsifying dish that we call Chicken and Dumplings. I just love stories like this . And your story poked me into realizing that I have forgotten to add a very important family element of my own to my story about Chicken and Dumplings and my preparations for this Cook-off.

As I was getting ready to make Chicken and Dumplings I called my 86-year old Mother, Janet Edna Pink Ross. (Don't worry, Mother does not fear having her age revealed). My Mother told me she's never made Chicken and Dumplings, yet she had it many times when she was a young girl growing up in Twin Falls, Idaho--most memorably at the home of my Great Aunt Bertie Pink.

Bertie Pink was born sometime around 1890 or so, we don't really know. What we do know is that she never had a real job and the day she stopped driving, sometime around 1960 or so, she parked the 1924 Cadillac in the garage and never drove it again. Bertie's only job was to care for her Mother, Jenny and her Father, Max, and to tend to the small farm they kept. Bertie was a wonderful cook. I especially remember her delicious fruitcake soaked in large amounts of brandy and her delicious cold fried chicken that she always packed for us each summer when we drove home to Oregon. I imagine those were the same chickens she used for her Chicken and Dumplings. Now these were what we today call "free-range, organic" chickens. In 1934 in Twin Falls, Idaho they were chickens that pecked at grass and bugs and lived a very happy life. Then they ended up in Bertie's stewpot.

Mother told me she thought Bertie left me a hand-written recipe for Chicken and Dumplings in her recipe box, but I never found one. There were recipes for just about everything else, including divinity and escalloped potatoes, all written in long-hand with a fountain pen, yet I never found a recipe card for Chicken and Dumplings.

So here's to Elaine Mills Kinsey and Bertie Pink and Chicken and Dumplings for all.

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As I read through our discussion points, it became apparent early on that the only part of my Chicken Pie recipe that would relate to our cook-off would be the stock and the chicken. I decided to go with the "Cracker-Barrel" style base for my stew--a white gravy with only chicken. No vegetables.

This is a photo of the finished chicken stock.

015.JPG

It's really what we could call a chicken jelly as it has that kind of consistency. Those little white bits are actually nice little globs of fat. I used this stock to make what I am calling "chicken gravy."

The chicken gravy was made by whisking together 1/2 cup of Wondra flour with 1 cup of half and half. Cream would have been too thick and heavy for my tastes, milk too thin. I only use Wondra for gravies and sauces because it is milled especially fine for these types of recipes. If you've never used it, try it. Your sauces and gravies will come out incredibly smooth and silky with nary a lump.

Once the base of flour and half and half is poured into a heated pot the work of whisking in the chicken stock begins. I added about 4 cups of chicken stock to make a thick gravy, then seasoned it with salt and black pepper-

031.JPG

Next into the pot went the reserved chicken meat from the chickens that made the stock. I didn't measure the amount of chicken meat, I just put in the amount that looked good for the size of the pot. I added a small bit of fresh thyme and Italian parsley to the gravy at this point-

035.JPG

This is the pot with the "chicken gravy" as I'm calling it, awaiting the next important stage. I'll be showing everyone my attempts to make a drop-style of dumpling.

For the dumplings I decided to keep things in a retro-style, relying on a recipe from the aforementioned American Woman's Cookbook of 1945, edited by Ruth Berolzheimer.

Here is the pot waiting for a recipe of "Feather Dumplings"-

042.JPG

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Over the years, drawing on a few grandmothers' ideas, and good cookbooks, I've developed what I think is the epitome of a good C&D. What I look for: Rich yellow lip-sticky stock, long silky shreds of chicken, and pillows of tender-chewy noodly dumplings. When I was a teenager, my best friend's mom made a dish called chicken and noodles, which is where I started, too. She would take a whole chicken, barely cover it in water, and cook it all day, with salt and pepper, and a load of celery. She'd pour water in, just keeping the birdy under, and let it go all afternoon, pulling it out, shredding the meat, and adding in a bag of dry egg noodles at the end. That was compelling, to me. I wanted to make it WAY better.

My method is this: A hyper-rich broth, with more chicken than I would typically use for stock, including roasted carcasses, a whole chicken, or split breasts, and (this is super important, for the collagen-sticky broth) at least a pound of chicken feet. Vegetables included carrots, onions, celery, turnip, parsnips. Salt, pepper, and not much else. I cook that all day, till there's only a few quarts of broth left, say 4-5. Halfway through the cooking, I pull the chicken out, salvage the nicest parts, the whole breasts, thighs, leg chunks, and let the rest go back into the soup. All the rest gets strained off. I don't salt till near the end, and then I add tons of black pepper, too.

My recipe for dumplings is loosely modeled on my favorite pirogi dough recipe, with eggs, butter, and milk enriching the dough, but no leavening. I cut them into 1" diamonds, about 1/8" thick, and along with all the flour on the board, they go into the strained broth, to simmer for about 20 minutes. The chicken shreds from the saved pieces go in, along with a bunch of chopped parsley, and there it is. Simple. Very flavorful and rich. Not heavy but silky. It's the quintessential sick food. The texture of the broth, what little there is left in the pot after the dumplings cook up, is akin to a velvety egg drop broth. Not thin, not thick.

I'm making it this weekend, I'll make sure I document it, take some pictures, and jot down my actual recipe.

I see some other ideas of chicken and dumplings, with the biscuity dough and veggies and a gravy. I like these a lot. I make this a lot, too, a good chicken stew, with a load of whatever vegetables are around. I add ground fresh cranberries and black pepper to my Bisquik dumpling biscuit-things, but we call that "chicken pie" if it's baked, or "chicken stew" if it's simmered.

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As the chicken gravy was stewing on top of the stove, I turned to the dumplings. Now mind you, I have never, ever, made a dumpling. I was quite nervous about this stage of the recipe. Reading through our posts here, I was not, at my stage of naievete, going to even attempt to cut dough into strips ala dumplings.

Of the eight dumpling recipes Ms. Berolzheimer offered in her cookbook, I settled on the "Feather Dumpling" recipe. I suppose it was named after a feather for its finished texture. One would find out in the final tasting. I hoped. The only addition I made was to add a bit of fresh thyme and parsley for flavor.

The recipe called for 2 cups flour, 1 tsp. salt, 4 tsp. baking powder, 1/4 tsp. pepper, 1 egg, 3 tbsp. melted butter and "about" 2/3 cup milk. After mixing these ingredients together, the batter was what I would describe as "semi-stiff"-

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Now I was quite nervous. The recipe called for the cook to drop the batter by teaspoons into boiling liquid. Since I hadn't done this before, I improvised. I used two large spoons and sort of shaped large spoons of dumpling batter and dropped that into the hot, not boiling, chicken gravy.

The recipe called one to "cover, very closely, and cook for 18 minutes." I couldn't resist temptation, so I had to uncover the pot after about 3 minutes and take a look at my dumplings. I shouldn't have looked. Uncovering an uncooked dumpling at the 3-minute mark is not a pretty sight. The poor little things looked like they were going to melt in my precious chicken gravy-

048.JPG

I covered the pot, trusted the editors of the American Woman's Cookbook who I am sure knew that exactly 18 minutes was in fact the right amount of cooking time for a Feather Dumpling and I left well alone.

This was the result-

056.JPG

As you can see in this close-up, the dumplings did not suffer from the indignity of my uncovering of the pot. They were light and fluffy inside, yet with a nice outside, almost biscuit-like outside cover. As some of you have mentioned, the dumplings are a delicious counter in terms of texture and flavor to the chicken gravy. And what a wonderful taste sensation when you spoon a bit of this little dumpling together with some of that warm gravy, the two melt together and this is just one of the most delicious

dishes I think I have ever tasted-

057.JPG

I'm looking forward to seeing your Chicken and Dumplings dishes.

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We have half a turkey, part of our freezer cleanout, thawing. It should be ready tomorrow, when the snow comes back. Would it be wrong to make turkey and dumplings with it?

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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Turkey'd work, I'd think. You're just risking deathly dry flesh with a long braise. I got chicken thighs a la Dave the Cook above.

As I think about making this tonight, frankly I'm terrified by the prospect of making decent dumplings after many years of failure at such tasks. If I'm going the biscuit route, I'm trying to follow the basic tenets, right? Get out the White Lily, cut in the fat (leaf lard?), don't overwork it, all that. Si? No?

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I don't think all of that is necessary, Chris. Most biscuit-style dumpling recipes I've used call for liquid fat --either oil or melted butter, mixed in with the wet ingredients. And I've always used AP flour. The best dumplings I've made were from recipes that call for egg, but I'm not sure that the egg is the reason they turned out so well.

Two things I'd recommend are not to add too much liquid (you want the dough to be very stiff) and to cook them longer than you think you should -- 20 to 25 minutes, regardless of what your recipe says.

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. . . .

As you can see in this close-up, the dumplings did not suffer from the indignity of my uncovering of the pot. They were light and fluffy inside, yet with a nice outside, almost biscuit-like outside cover. As some of you have mentioned, the dumplings are a delicious counter in terms of texture and flavor to the chicken gravy. And what a wonderful taste sensation when you spoon a bit of this little dumpling together with some of that warm gravy, the two melt together and this is just one of the most delicious

dishes I think I have ever tasted-

057.JPG

I'm looking forward to seeing your Chicken and Dumplings dishes.

Nice dish, David, though it seems to me that it's more like creamed chicken than the a soup-like concoction normally associated with C&D (said the guy who browned his dumplings!)

It's obvious you've done some research. Is there an historical basis for this sort of modification?

Dave Scantland
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dscantland@eGstaff.org
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Eat more chicken skin.

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After a quick confab with Dave, I decided to throw caution to the winds and use a cornmeal dumpling recipe from the 1997 edition of Joy of Cooking. Since it resembled a hushpuppy receipt, and since I had some spiced flour left over from the dredging, I added some onion and scallion before tossing the quenelles... um... wait... check that... the big clumps of dough onto the stew. More, with photos, after dinner. Fingers crossed.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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. . . .

As you can see in this close-up, the dumplings did not suffer from the indignity of my uncovering of the pot. They were light and fluffy inside, yet with a nice outside, almost biscuit-like outside cover. As some of you have mentioned, the dumplings are a delicious counter in terms of texture and flavor to the chicken gravy. And what a wonderful taste sensation when you spoon a bit of this little dumpling together with some of that warm gravy, the two melt together and this is just one of the most delicious

dishes I think I have ever tasted-

057.JPG

I'm looking forward to seeing your Chicken and Dumplingcs dishes.

Nice dish, David, though it seems to me that it's more like creamed chicken than the a soup-like concoction normally associated with C&D (said the guy who browned his dumplings!)

It's obvious you've done some research. Is there an historical basis for this sort of modification?

Well, sort-of, which isn't much of a definitive answer!

The dumplings were definitely historical from the perspective that they were pulled exactly out of a cookbook published in 1945 with the only "modern" modification being the addition of fresh thyme leaves and chopped, fresh Italian parsley.

Now the "chicken gravy" is a different matter--and much harder for me to argue as being a recipe based in history in terms of its authenticity. I pulled it from my Chicken with Biscuits base, our discussions here, and a number of my vintage cookbooks. Those cookbooks range from the late 1890's into the early 1960's. I found that the recipes for Chicken and Dumplings ranged from soupy and watery to recipes with the consistency of stews and chowders. Many of the recipes did allow for the cook to thicken the stew with a mixture of flour and milk. And I should note that I didn't do any research of recipes on the Internet--it was my own recipes, our discussions and hard cover vintage cookbooks that led to the final dish.

Now my dish is on the "thicker" end of the spectrum and could easily be adapted as a "Creamed Chicken on Toast," or "Creamed Chicken with Dumplings" or "Creamed Chicken on Biscuits" recipe.

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After a quick confab with Dave, I decided to throw caution to the winds and use a cornmeal dumpling recipe from the 1997 edition of Joy of Cooking. Since it resembled a hushpuppy receipt, and since I had some spiced flour left over from the dredging, I added some onion and scallion before tossing the quenelles... um... wait... check that... the big clumps of dough onto the stew. More, with photos, after dinner. Fingers crossed.

I am literally feeling your dumpling anticipation and I know they will be delicious. I felt the same way when I was making my dumplings. I'm especially interested in how much time your dumplings will need to cook in the stew so don't forget to record that timing for us. Good luck Chris.

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I don't know if he follows the egullet forums, but coincidentally, Michael Ruhlman's

very latest blog post is his method for making C&D. Check it out here:

http://blog.ruhlman.com/2010/01/chicken-and-dumplings.html

Well, it's got chicken in it. And I guess those are dumplings, although I'd be more inclined to call them some kind of gnocchi. But that's not chicken and dumplings, in my book. I'd expect to see that on a menu with quotation marks around it.

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Well, it's got chicken in it. And I guess those are dumplings, although I'd be more inclined to call them some kind of gnocchi. But that's not chicken and dumplings, in my book. I'd expect to see that on a menu with quotation marks around it.

Looks like gnoochi to me too.

Anyway, I love, love, love Chicken and Dumplings. But sometimes my dumplings have a raw flour taste-bitterish- as if I am not cooking them enough. I keep trying to cook them longer and longer in hopes that that is the problem, but is it just that I am using a crappy recipe? I have also tried them with 00 flour and that didn't help. Is it the baking powder? I keep trying this recipe, because I remember them being good when someone ELSE made them.

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2/3 cup milk

2 tablespoons oil

Recipe calls for 10 minutes each side. I go at least 15 each side, but it does sometimes suck up all my broth.

My recipe for the chicken and broth is really simple and I love it. It's always perfect. I usually stew whatever chicken parts I have on hand (making sure there is enough dark meat) with onions, carrots, celery, parsley, sometimes leak, S&P, and fresh thyme. Very simple yet pleasing to my palate!!!

I always debone the chicken and add back to the broth and lay the dumplings on top to cook.

I am going to make this dish again tomorrow.

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Well, it's got chicken in it. And I guess those are dumplings, although I'd be more inclined to call them some kind of gnocchi. But that's not chicken and dumplings, in my book. I'd expect to see that on a menu with quotation marks around it.

Looks like gnoochi to me too.

Anyway, I love, love, love Chicken and Dumplings. But sometimes my dumplings have a raw flour taste-bitterish- as if I am not cooking them enough. I keep trying to cook them longer and longer in hopes that that is the problem, but is it just that I am using a crappy recipe? I have also tried them with 00 flour and that didn't help. Is it the baking powder? I keep trying this recipe, because I remember them being good when someone ELSE made them.

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2/3 cup milk

2 tablespoons oil

Recipe calls for 10 minutes each side. I go at least 15 each side, but it does sometimes suck up all my broth.

My recipe for the chicken and broth is really simple and I love it. It's always perfect. I usually stew whatever chicken parts I have on hand (making sure there is enough dark meat) with onions, carrots, celery, parsley, sometimes leak, S&P, and fresh thyme. Very simple yet pleasing to my palate!!!

I always debone the chicken and add back to the broth and lay the dumplings on top to cook.

I am going to make this dish again tomorrow.

Of course I'm not the dumpling expert here, but I'm wondering if you need a bit more fat in the mix so that the dumplings don't have that raw taste? What kind of oil do you use--is it salad oil or olive oil? Maybe that is the problem.

The old-style recipes typically called for plain shortening or lard and that would probably give more flavor than oil. And whole milk would also give more flavor than 2% or skim milk. Finally, you might want to add a beaten egg to the dumpling batter.

I'll be interested to see if those few changes maybe give you better results. Anyone else have any ideas?

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The results:

4310639626_9fdfec9e8c.jpg

4310639752_20bf8fc6d6.jpg

I followed Dave's basic approach above, keeping it simple with chicken thighs, onions and celery, roasted chicken stock, thyme, and so on. The main tweak was the cornmeal dumpling I mentioned above, to which I added minced onion and scallion, and the final roast to brown the tops.

I absolutely loved it: the textural contrasts between the silky thighs and the crunchy dumplings, the thyme infusing both stew and dough, the rich broth.

My wife? Meh. What's with all the extra stuff in the dumplings -- and why cornmeal? Why fancy it up with thyme?

You get the idea: chicken & dumpling traditionalism versus chicken & dumpling adaptation. She wants white, AP flour dumplings with nothing in 'em but S&P and nixed the crisp; the dumplings were perfect for me precisely because, well, they weren't blah.

My mom never made it. Her mom? You guess.

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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And your broth appears to be more on the "soupy" side as opposed to my "creamed chicken" dish, yes? How did you like the consistency of the broth?

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You get the idea: chicken & dumpling traditionalism versus chicken & dumpling adaptation. She wants white, AP flour dumplings with nothing in 'em but S&P and nixed the crisp; the dumplings were perfect for me precisely because, well, they weren't blah.

That's a big dichotomy. I have to admit that when Dave the Cook invited me over for Chicken & Dumplings and proposed using the Donald Link recipe, I was very skeptical. My first thought was that if dumplings weren't boiled/steamed, they weren't dumplings. I said it was chicken and biscuits, which is something my college dorm used to make (yeah, it was about as good as you'd expect.) Having tasted the Link recipe, though, I'll say that a) it was great and b) it's definitely chicken and dumplings. Unlike the Ruhlman recipe, I don't think quotation marks are necessary -- although Sam might disagree.

On the other hand, I also like the plainer, boiled, non-crisp type.

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I did, in fact, try it with turkey, as I needed something to do with some stuff from the freezer but not a lot of hands-on time.

I had a single breast and a single leg/thigh quarter from the freezer, the other half of our Thanksgiving turkey. I thawed them, put them in a pot with a couple of halved onions, a handful of baby carrots, a celery stalk which I broke into smaller pieces, a bay leaf, a few peppercorns, and barely enough water to cover. On the stove it went to simmer for a couple of hours, at which point I took out the veg and tasted them but deemed them spent, removed the meat from the bones and put it back in the pot, and strained and defatted the resulting broth.

At this point, I sliced a couple of onions. I sauteed them in a little of the schmaltz in a small frying pan, deglazed the pan with a bit of the broth, and added the whole shebang to the pot with the turkey meat. I added a little extra water because it seemed like it needed a little more liquid, a couple of handfuls of frozen peas because it looked really boring without any color, and salt because it really needed it. When it came back to a boil, I covered the top with some homemade ricotta gnocchi that I'd made a while ago and stashed (you guessed it) in the freezer, put the lid back on the pot, and let it go till the gnocchi were cooked through.

There wasn't much left, and we were too hungry to think about photos.

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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I am going to make this dish again tomorrow.

Of course I'm not the dumpling expert here, but I'm wondering if you need a bit more fat in the mix so that the dumplings don't have that raw taste? What kind of oil do you use--is it salad oil or olive oil? Maybe that is the problem.

The old-style recipes typically called for plain shortening or lard and that would probably give more flavor than oil. And whole milk would also give more flavor than 2% or skim milk. Finally, you might want to add a beaten egg to the dumpling batter.

I'll be interested to see if those few changes maybe give you better results. Anyone else have any ideas?

Hmmm, well the oil I used was Corn Oil because I thought my Olive Oil would be too tasty, and it's all I had in the house. I saw a recipe on some blog the other day that called for melted butter. Maybe I'll try that. The lard brick where I live is just too big to buy for one recipe. Plus, I don't even really know if it's the same. As for the milk, I use whole milk.

I'll post after I make it later. And thank you!

Edited by ambra (log)
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