As I was poking around our local grocery store’s clearance bin about a month ago, I stumbled on a box of “dumplings.” I was a bit confused, since they really just looked like really wide noodles, and it certainly didn’t fit my internal definition of what constitutes a dumpling.
But they were cheap.
So Joey and I tried “chicken and dumplings,” made with the recipe on the back of the box, which consisted of these noodles, canned chicken and a can of peas and carrots. It was fine.
But I wanted to give a more traditional dumpling a try, so I hunted for a recipe and found one that purported to create a delicious, homemade soup in only 30 minutes.
I have rarely made myself gasp with a kitchen creation, but let me tell you, I celebrated out loud when I pulled the lid off my soup and saw beautiful dumplings floating on the surface. This recipe was a complete slam dunk for me, and while the noodles we tried before were good, this recipe was the winner.
The blog “The Slow Roasted Italian” is quickly becoming one of my favorites, and this recipe came from there. It was created by Donna Elick. You can find the original post at https://www.theslowroasteditalian.com/2012/11/chicken-and-dumplings-in-30-minutes-2.html. I played around with her seasonings a bit in my version.
Chicken and Dumplings
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon sage
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 cup flour
- 3 cups milk I used skim
- 2 cups fresh or frozen peas and diced carrots
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 cup milk I used skim
- In a large pot with a lid, heat the chicken broth, water, butter and seasonings over medium. Cover the pot and let it come to a boil.
- Cut the chicken into about one-inch pieces and add them to the pot and cover again.
- In a large sealable container, combine the flour and milk. Seal and shake until the mixture is smooth. Add the flour mixture to the pot slowly, stirring as you do so. Add the vegetables to the pot as well and put the lid back on.
- While the soup is cooking, combine all the dumpling ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
- Stir the soup really well, scraping the bottom with your spoon to make sure the flour mixture isn’t sticking to the bottom.
- Then, using a tablespoon-sized scoop (or eye-balling about that amount with a normal spoon), add scoops of the dumpling mixture to the soup. They’ll sink like rocks, but don’t worry, that’s what they’re supposed to do.
- Once all the dumpling mixture is in the pot, cover it again and reduce heat to a low simmer. Let the soup cook for 10 minutes. It’s done when the soup coats the back of a spoon.
- Remove from heat and serve.
Oh, boy, was this a hearty dinner for us. And we were able to freeze the leftovers for later, too, which has been a nice treat on busy evenings.
I know there are a lot of complicated types of dumplings out there, but this recipe is not one of them, and you definitely get the “wow” factor with those beautiful balls of dough floating in the top of a creamy soup.
And I still haven’t found any evidence that the noodles I used technically counted as dumplings, but I guess now that I have a really good recipe, it won’t matter much—unless I find another really good sale.
This piece first appeared in print on Sept. 26, 2019.
Spice Up Your Life is a weekly newspaper column written by Lindsey Young in south central Kansas and sponsored by Main Street Co. & Kitchen Corner in Newton, Kan. Visit their website at shopmainstco.com.