Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Chicken and Dumplings

 *NOTE*  I am not the measuring kind of cook....especially if it is a recipe that I just know, or have don't have a recipe I apologize beforehand for the lack of directions in the recipe! 


1 Whole Chicken (any size)
1 stick of butter
1 can of cream of chicken
Salt & Pepper galore

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup ice water

To begin: break out your large stock pot and place the chicken in it (I like to rinse my chicken off first and make sure to pull the innards out of the chicken).  Cover the chicken with water in the pot.  Now sprinkle a generous amount of salt in the water (you can't over salt here...this is for making the chicken broth so be generous...if you want to play it cautious then you can always add salt to taste later).  Now add your pepper...again be generous but not as generous as the salt.  Don't you wish I measured things!  Now throw in your stick of butter....don't hesitate...just do it!
Turn the heat to medium high and bring to a boil.  Once boiling turn the heat down to medium low and place the lid on.  Boil on low for a good hour to hour 1/2.
When you are getting close to the chicken being done turn your attention to the dumplings. 

Just an FYI here:  I usually make two batches of the dumplings to make things thick.  That's the way we Richardson's like to eat around here!  So if you're like us and want thicker Chicken & Dumplings then you will want to make 2 batches as well....or double the recipe.

Mix the flour with the salt and mound together in a bowl.  Beginning at the center of the mound drizzle a small amount of the ice water over the flour.  Using your fingers and moving from the center to the sides of the bowl, gradually incorporate about 3/4 cup of ice water.  Knead the dough and form it into a ball.
Dust a good amount of flour onto a clean work place and roll out the will be very firm. (Make sure to flour your rolling pin as well). Work on it from the center out until you have it around 1/8 inch thick.  Then let the dough relax a bit.
Cut the dough into 1 inch pieces....I use my pizza cutter for this and just cut stripes and then cut them into the desired length.
(If you don't want to do this, you can always buy the frozen dumplings in the frozen bread section of the super market)
Now back to the chicken:  Pull the chicken from the pot and place in a pan to will let it cool for a while because you need to de-bone it.
Turn your heat back to medium heat and get a nice rolling boil.  Drop in dumplings one at a time stirring occasionally to make sure those bad boys aren't sticking.
When you have all the dumplings in reduce heat to medium and let cook for about 20-30 minutes, again stirring occasionally.
 Head over to your chicken.  Hopefully it's had time to cool....if not be careful and don't burn yourself.  De-bone and de-skin your chicken and pull apart the meat into bite size pieces.  After the dumplings have cooked dump in your can of Cream of Chicken and also dump in your chicken pieces.  Stir until the Cream of Chicken is well incorporated.
Now make some cornbread and enjoy!

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