Friday, February 03, 2012

An American Classic

 Remember how I said I was going to try to use my cookbooks more?  Well I'm doing really well at it!  One of my other Channukah gifts from Thatboy was Cooking Light Chicken.  He said he got it for me because I make a lot of chicken and he knows I love Cooking Light recipes.  I don't think I've ever made a bad one and The All-New Complete Cooking Light Cookbook is one of my favorite cookbooks I own.  It's actually one of the few cookbooks where I've made almost every recipe in it.

Since I've never made Chicken and Dumplings I thought this would be a good recipe to start out with.

Cooking Light calls this a "classic American Dish."  It's not something I grew up with, so I'll take their word for it when they say that Americans are passionate and opinionated about chicken and dumplings.  I do, however know Matzoh ball soup, which is the Jewish version of chicken and dumplings.  And I do know that people are very opinionated about their matzoh balls. 

These are dropped dumplings - based on this recipe, and what I know about matzoh balls, I'm thinking I would prefer the rolled dumplings better.  That is, if they're anything like nice, dense, matzoh balls.  These are fluffy and light, like clouds, which is not my preference. The soup itself is really good though - full of great chicken soup flavor.  And a little tweaking of those dumplings should have them hard as rocks in no time!

Chicken and Rosemary Dumplings (From Cooking Light Chicken)
4 cups chicken broth
3 cups water
1 boneless skinless chicken breast
2 thyme sprigs
2 tsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups diced carrot
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
1 cup diced onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 Tbsp chopped rosemary
2 tsp baking powder
2 Tbsp butter, softened
1/2 cup low fat buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
  1. Combine chicken broth, water, chicken and thyme in a dutch oven over medium high heat.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
  2. Remove chicken from broth and cool.  Shred chicken with two forks.  Remove thyme and discard.
  3. Heat oil in pan over medium high heat.  Add the carrot, celery, onion, and garlic  Saute until onion is translucent.
  4. Add the vegetables and 1/2 tsp salt to broth.  Simmer 10 minutes.
  5. Combine 1 1/4 cup flour with rosemary, remaining salt, and baking powder in a large bowl. 
  6. Cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal. 
  7. Combine buttermilk and egg, stirring with a whisk. 
  8. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, stirring until just combined.
  9. Return the chicken from the dutch oven.  Bring to a simmer over medium high heat.   
  10. Add remaining flour to 1/4 cup of water and whisk to create a slurry.  Add the slurry to the soup and simmer 3 minutes.
  11. Drop the dumpling dough, 1 Tbsp per dumpling into the chicken mixture. Cover and cook 7 minutes, but do not let boil.  Sprinkle with pepper.  


  1. Haha that's so funny....I love the fluffy dumplings but maybe that's cause I didn't grow up on matzoh ball soup. :)

    thanks for your tweet about my grandfather, chica! I appreciate it.

  2. I am one of the minority who likes dense matzah balls. I use seltzer if I want to make them light, which I don't usually do.

  3. I didn't grow up with chicken and dumplings but I have learned to love te dish. I am excite to try a lighter version. This looks great.

  4. I did not grow up with this fish either but I have fallen in love with it. I can't wait to try a lighter version.

  5. My husbands favorite is southern style of chicken and dumplings ( there is nothing light in it) It's delicious, but I prefer a good homemade matzoh ball soup. I like the matzoh soft.

  6. Hilarious! I LOVE chicken and dumplings! My grandmother made them often and the chicken tasted like chicken back then. I have found a couple of really great chicken farmers here, so am back into that great cooking. I actually have a chicken and dumplings post! Your soup looks rich and flavourful - homemade soups are THE BOMB!