Growing up one of my favorite meals in the fall and winter was chicken and dumplings. My mom’s recipe was simple, delicious and filling. She always made a huge pot of it so we could eat on it for days. Soon after getting married I made this for my husband who was convinced he didn’t like the dish. Much to his amazement he realized this is the kind of thing he could eat all the time and, in fact, he requests it weekly. Since it is just the two of us this one dish lasts at least 2 days with Gray eating it for lunch and dinner.
4 chicken quarters or 1 whole chicken
2 bay leaves
Salt and Pepper
Italian Herb Seasoning or your favorite dried herbs
4 cloves of garlic, diced
2 cups of chopped celery
2 cups of chopped carrots
2 cups of Bisquick
1 cup of stock
1 cup of water
Put the chicken, bay leaves, salt, pepper, herbs and garlic into a pot and fill with water until chicken is completely covered leaving about an inch to the top. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add celery and carrots then continue to simmer for another 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, remove the chicken to a separate dish and allow to cool for at least an hour.
Once cooled remove the meat from the bones. To make this easier I spread out a large sheet of tin foil to work on and separate the bones, chicken and skin. Any fat, skin or pieces that I prefer not to eat I save as a treat for our dogs. Chicken and dumplings night is their favorite evening too.
At this time you can also remove the layer of fat on the stock. Just use a spoon or ladle to remove the very top layer.
Return the chicken to the stock and bring back up to a boil.
To make the dumplings combine Bisquick with 1/2 a cup of the stock and 1/2 a cup of water. You may need to adjust the liquid measurements until you have a wet, sticky dough.
Drop spoonfuls of dough into the boiling stock. The easiest way to do this is to dip the spoon first into the stock, scoop up the dough, then dip the spoon back into the stock. Continue boiling for 10 minutes.
Let the chicken’n’dumplings cool (I know it’s hard) before serving!
Tip: If you do not have Bisquick you can make a quick substitute by combining 2 cups of flour with 1 teaspoon baking powder and 1 teaspoon salt. This makes a much firmer dumpling but it will do in a pinch.
Photographs were taken by http://mcarolinesimmons.wordpress.com