Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Chicken & Dumplings
Yep. You read right. And, no, it's not a play on words. Today I'm posting a recipe for Chicken & Dumplings—a good, hot meal for a cold day. This feeds a family of 4 to 6.
What you'll need:
A rotisserie chicken from the local market (cooked)
2 cans of cheap, plain refrigerator biscuits (more if they're small)
A large soup or spaghetti pot with lid (mine's an 8-qt)
Salt & Pepper
Hint: I like to buy my chicken in the afternoon and let it sit out and cool a bit before I prepare supper, but you can refrigerate overnight if needed.
Fill your soup pot about 1/2 full with water and set to boil. While you're waiting for that to heat, remove all usable meat from chicken, break into bite-size pieces, and set aside in a bowl.
Take the entire chicken carcass (bones, fat, skin, etc.) and put it into the water. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10-15 minutes to make a broth. (This step is important. It may seem icky, but it's where the dish gets its yummy flavor.) While the broth is simmering, open the biscuits and cut them into 4 wedges each.
Hint: It's best to use plain, cheap biscuits. They tend to have less shortening and hold together better in the broth. Avoid expensive or 'flaky' varieties.
Use a slotted spoon to remove carcass parts from broth and discard. Test your broth at this point and add salt and pepper to taste. Once you're satisfied, add the chicken pieces, then drop the raw biscuit pieces right in. You can give the top of those a light sprinkle of salt and pepper if you want.
Cover and simmer for about half an hour. The very outer layer of the biscuits will dissolve and thicken the broth. They will be fluffy for the most part, maybe a little chewy right in the center.
Ladle a mixture of broth, chicken, and dumplings into each bowl, cool, and enjoy. :)