Monday, March 7, 2011

Chicken & Buttermilk Dumplings

Chicken & Dumplings. Heck yes.

I've made this a few times now, and it gets better and better every time. Like any good southern girl, I LOVE chicken and dumplings and these are so, SO good, and they get better the longer they hang out. The dumplings are fluffy, but firm and the sauce is so creamy & delish.


Chicken and Dumplings 
Recipe adapted from Bakin' & Eggs & Tyler Florence

Ingredients:

FOR THE STOCK & SAUCE

  • 1 (3 to 3 1/2 pound) whole chicken
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 to 5 black peppercorns
  • 1 head of unpeeled garlic, split through the center
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • Enough water to cover chicken
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup chopped chives
  • 3/4 to 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • A small yellow onion; diced
  • 5 carrots, diced
  • 5 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Freshly ground black pepper, for garnish
  • Chopped chives, for garnish
Place the chicken and all stock ingredients in a large Dutch oven and cover with water. Bring water to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce to a simmer.  Cook for one hour until the chicken is tender and internal temperature registers at least 165 degrees. Skim the surface of fat as it cooks.
Sift the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a small bowl, using a whisk, lightly beat the eggs, chives and buttermilk together; pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently fold. Mix just until the dough comes together; the batter should be thick and cake-like.
In a Dutch oven, over medium heat, add the butter and oil. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and bay leaves and saute until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour to make a roux and continue to stir for two minutes to coat the veggies in flour and remove the starchy taste. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, 1 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. Add frozen peas.


FOR THE DUMPLINGS
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup chopped chives
  • 3/4 to 1 cup buttermilk

Directions:
Chicken & Stock

Remove chicken from pot and place on a cutting board. Let rest until it is cool enough to handle. Strain the stock and set aside. When chicken has cooled, shred and set aside.

Dumplings:

Mix all ingredients together. 

Sauce:

Let sauce simmer, stirring occasionally, until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 15 minutes. Stir in heavy cream.

Fold the reserved shredded chicken into the sauce and bring to a simmer. Using 2 spoons, carefully drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the dumpling batter into the hot mixture. The dumplings should cover the top of the sauce, but should not be touching or crowded. Let the dumplings poach for 10 to 15 minutes until they are firm and puffy. Discard the bay leaves, season with freshly cracked black pepper and garnish with chopped chives before serving.


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