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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Recipe Re-do: Chicken and Dumplings

I have a sore throat today. I want chicken soup!

...but not just ANY chicken soup: I want dumplings. Dumplings are problematic for GF folks, since they typically contain wheat flour. The wheat flour, because of the gluten, makes dumplings fluffy and tender, and helps to thicken the stew base. Conversely, the gluten that makes the dumplings hold together also makes them gummy if overcooked. The beautiful thing about my GF dumplings is that they can withstand a lot of simmering without becoming gummy and tough.

So, for dinner tonight, I am updating the classic recipe from the Southern Living Cookbook.
I am using King Arthur Flour all-purpose gluten free flour for my dumplings. I've used a few different GF flour blends, and this one has proven reliable in this recipe after several attempts.

Here's the recipe for the stock and the dumplings (six large servings):

For the stock/stew base:
2 Cups water
2 Cups GF chicken broth
1 sprig each of thyme, basil, and 1 sage leaf
1/4 Cup chopped parsley
1/4 onion
1 bay leaf
5 peppercorns
couple pinches of salt
5 sliced carrots
2 sliced celery ribs
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
dash celery seed
I cook the chicken in the crock pot, on low, in the base for at least 5 hours. Before serving, shred the chicken, and set aside. Strain the stock, throw away the herbs and onion slice, then add the carrots and celery back into the base. Add the chicken back into the base, and add a dash of celery seed. You can also simmer on the stove top for two hours. If you use a crock pot, you must transfer the ingredients to a stew pot on the stove to make the dumplings. The dumplings must be simmered after bringing the stock to a boil. Most crock pots cannot achieve a rolling boil

About 30 minutes before serving, make the drop dumplings:
1 Cup King Arthur GF All-Purpose flour
1/2 Tbs baking powder
dash of salt
3 Tbs butter
1 Tbs chopped fresh chives
1/2 Cup buttermilk

parsley for serving
Blend the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter into the dry mixture until it looks like cornmeal. Mix in the buttermilk. Stir in chives.  Mix until well blended. Bring the soup base and chicken and veggies to a boil in a stew pot on the stove. Turn down to simmer/bubbling. Drop tablespoon-sized pieces of the dumpling dough into the simmering soup base. Cover and cook for 20 minutes. Serve in a soup bowl. Sprinkle with some fresh parsley before serving.

Let me know if you have variations on the chive flavoring. That's just the one I prefer.

Have a warm evening!

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