Spring Chicken and Basil Dumplings Recipe

From Dorothy McNett's Recipe Book.

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Spring Chicken and Basil Dumplings

From Dorothy McNett's recipes at www.dorothymcnett.com. I call this Spring Chicken because instead of using a whole stewing hen I use several already cup up pieces of chicken such as breasts, thighs, drumsticks. This allows you to make a smaller batch than the old-fashioned recipe, making this perfect for cooking for just several people.

3-4 chicken breasts, thighs, or drumsticks
1 tablespoon all purpose unbleached flour
1 medium sized onion, quartered
1-2 carrots, cut into chunks
1-2 ribs celery, cut into chunks
3-4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried herbs, such as basil, oregano, rosemary or a combination
1 teaspoon sea salt (or less, depending on the stock)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock, your own or a good quality commercial one
1-2 cups fresh or frozen peas

for the dumplings:
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 egg, whisked
2 tablespoons melted butter, or olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/3 cup milk
2 tablespoons finely minced fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Sprinkle the flour over the chicken pieces, rubbing it in a bit. Place all the ingredients (except the peas) for the chicken into a heavy bottomed stock pot. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, cover and cook gently for about 1 hour, or until chicken is done and falling off of the bones. Remove the chicken, let it cool a bit so that you can easily remove all of the chicken from the bones, cutting into serving sizes. In meantime, prepare the dumplings by combining the flour, crumbs, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Whisk well. In another bowl, whisk the egg, butter, onion, milk, basil and pepper. Stir into the dry ingredients to make a stiff batter. Add the chicken pieces back to the soup along with the peas and bring back to a boil. Drop the dumpling mixture by tablespoons into the bubbling liquid. Reduce to simmer. Cover and cook 15 minutes on simmer without lifting the cover. Serve in flat soup plates or deep bowls, with a dumpling nestled on the top.

Recipe created 2011-02-01.

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