Chicken and Dumpling… Stew!

I am new to the soup world.  I always ate Campbell’s chicken noodle when sick and when in need of a homemade crock of stew — Momma’s beef stew is AMAZING. Last fall as winter set in, I was determined not only to use my crock pot more but to also learn how to make new soups… or just soups in general.  What I found out was that 1. it wasn’t that hard and 2. cooking soup for an army was the best idea ever.  We could munch on stew for dinner more than one night and freeze what was left when we tired of it.  During my souping adventures I came across this recipe wile watching the food network.  I made several modifications to better suit my liking and got rid of the fancy ingredients that aren’t typically found in my kitchen.  If it isn’t easy, easy to find, or something I will use again and again — I tend to replace it with something better.  A free tipful tuesday on thursday. 🙂  Recipes can ALWAYS be modified. 🙂

Chicken Stew with Dumplings

Whatcha need:
5 cups chicken broth
1 whole chicken or 2 large packs chicken breasts or even quarters
carrots, peeled and cut in half diagonally – I actually used canned sliced carrots because it’s what I had on hand.
4 potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cups onions – chopped
3 tbsp butter
3 chopped celery stalks
2 cups mushrooms – I hate mushrooms and ALWAYS leave these out. 🙂
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup peas – recipes always call for frozen but I tend to use canned everything unless I have fresh –  you can also do without if you aren’t a pea fan!
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

For the Dumplings
2 cups sifted pastry flour — I never have pastry flour because I just don’t use it that much.  To substitue use use 3/4 cup all-purpose flour plus 2 tbsp. cornstarch for every cup.  So since this recipe call for 2 cups you would use 1.5 cups AP Flour and 4tbs of cornstarch.
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter
3/4 cup milk, (approx)

What you do:
In a large Dutch oven, bring water (approx. 8cups) to boil. Add chicken; cover and simmer over medium-low heat until chicken is cooked (about 30 minutes). Remove chicken from pot and let cool. Remove meat from bones and cut into bite-size chunks.

I tend to use the stock left from the chicken I cooked.  If you are using all breasts you will need to add more chicken stock and if you boiled to much of your water out you will need to add more stock. 🙂  Play this by ear.  Salt and Pepper your broth to taste and if it isn’t quite to your like add more!  Just make sure you have about 5+ cups so there is plenty of soup to go around.

Add carrots and potatoes to stock; cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add onions; let simmer, covered until onions are tender, about 5 minutes. Remove cooked veggies and set them aside.

In a separate pan, melt butter over medium-high heat and saute/cook celery, onion and mushrooms, stirring often, until softened. (about 8 minutes) Add flour, thyme, salt and pepper stirring, for 1 minute. Gradually whisk this mixture into your stock; bring to all of it to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, stirring often until thick enough to coat back of spoon. Add your veggies, chicken, peas and the heavy cream to the pot.

Dumplings: In bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in butter until in coarse crumbs. Using fork, stir in enough milk to make sticky “spoonable” dough. Leaving space around each, drop by tablespoonfuls onto simmering stew; cover and cook, without lifting lid, for 15 minutes or until dumplings are no longer doughy underneath.

🙂  Eat up.  It’s incredibly yummy!!

Until we meet again,

**myrainbowcounts@gmail.com**

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