Monday, January 16, 2017

Chicken and Dumpling Soup Conjures Childhood Memories

One of my fondest memories when visiting my grandparents was the aroma that wafted from their kitchen. Usually on weekends or holidays when we were visiting, my grandmother would make a chicken stock from the leftover chicken carcass. She would fill a large stockpot with water and seasonings and add chunks of onion, celery, carrots, parsley, and the carcass. The stock would simmer for most of the day. 

Most busy schedules don’t allow us the time to prepare chicken stock. When time is of the essence, I use Imagine Organic Free Range Chicken Broth. It’s got that home-cooked, rich-tasting flavor, similar to my grandmother’s. This recipe is an adaptation from the soup my grandmother often prepared for our family.

Chicken and Dumpling Soup
4 to 6 servings

1 tablespoon neutral oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup julienned carrots
1 cup sliced celery
¼ cup minced fresh parsley
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
4 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
A few grindings of fresh black pepper

½ cup yellow corn flour
½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
Several grindings of fresh black pepper
⅛ cup water
1 tablespoon neutral oil
1 egg

1.     In a large pot, heat the oil over moderate heat and sauté the onion until translucent. Add the carrots, celery, parsley, and chicken. Bring the mixture to a boil, cover and decrease heat to simmer and cook for about 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender. Season with 1 teaspoon of salt and black pepper.
2.     Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. When the water has boiled, decrease heat slightly; the water should be rumbling. Keep the water rumbling while you prepare the dumplings.
3.     In a medium bowl, combine the corn flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt and pepper. Add the water, oil, and egg, and whisk until mixture is fully combined. Shape mixture into balls, about 1 inch in diameter.
4.     Add the dumplings one at a time to the rumbling water. When all the dumplings have been added, cover and cook for about 8-10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the dumplings and transfer them to the chicken soup. Serve immediately.