Our frigid weather and snow continues! Keeping me indoors organizing and cooking comfort foods like Chicken and Dumplings. I haven’t made this chicken dish in a very long time. Always think of it being a lot of work? It didn’t seem long since I’m stuck inside anyways!
I like cooking using only one pan! So, if a slow cooker recipes calls for the meat to be browned first, I switch back to making it in one pan. Now I know if you work away from home slow cooker is the way to go. When I worked full-time I’d brown all the meat, and any other ingredients, the night before while cooking that nights dinner. The recipe would be prepared up to cooking and the full crock’s ceramic bowl tucked into the fridge overnight.
If I’m cooking, why not cook two meals at one time, to have a “night off” the next day? You could also make the the dish except for the dumplings the night before. Then just heat the stew up and cook the dumplings.
TIP 1: Dry sherry is a good staple to have in your pantry, a great substitute for white wine. I think it even taste better, always use a “dry” sherry.
TIP 2: Instead of chopping carrots, celery, use frozen mixed vegetables, great time saver.
Blow methods, slow cooker and one pot wonder, versions are provided.
Each method requires browning the chicken and vegetables in a separate pan..
The mixture is transferred to your slow cooker, cooked on low, for 4-6 hours. 30 minutes before done you add your dumplings to cook. Mine didn’t cook enough (I used GF free so that could make a difference) so I transfer everything back to the frying pan and finished the dumplings there.
It’s up to you, but I’m sticking with making it in one pot.
Old Fashioned Chicken and Dumplings
Serves 6 – 8
3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
Salt and pepper
4 tbsp. light olive oil
2 onions, minced
2 celery ribs, sliced 1/4 inch thick
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. tomato paste
2 tsp. minced fresh thyme or 1 /2 tsp dried
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup dry sherry (a great substitute for white wine, and I think it taste better)
4 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
4 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4″ thick (I always have baby carrots on hand, use these no peeling, OR used frozen mixed veggies for carrots and celery, BUT I always chop a fresh onion)
2 bay leaves
1 cup frozen peas
3 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
2 cups all-purpose flour, I used GF flour
1 tbsp. baking powder (buy aluminum free)
1 tsp. salt
1 cup whole milk, I used Almond for dairy free
3 tbsp. unsalted butter, I used vegan for dairy free
Both or slow cooker and one pot:
Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown half of chicken lightly on both sides, about 5-8 minutes. Transfer to bowl and add 1 more tbsp of oil and brown other half of chicken. Transfer to bowl when done.
Heat remaining tbsp of oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onions, celery (if using mixed veggies you can omit celery) garlic, tomato paste, and thyme and cook until vegetables are lightly softened and browned, 8-10 minutes. Stir flour in and cook for about a minute, then slowly whisk in sherry, scraping up those bits on the bottom. Whisk in 1 cup stock, smoothing out any lumps and transfer to your slow cooker OR leave in pan to continue stove top method.
After transferring to slow cooker, add 3 1/2 cups more stock, carrots (or at this point add your mixed veggies) bay leaves into and cook for 4 – 6 hours on low.
Leaves mixture in pan, add 3 1/2 cups more stock, carrots (or at this point add your mixed veggies) bay leaves into and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Both slow cooker and stove top method:
Transfer chicken to cutting board, letting cool slightly, then shred into bite-size pieces. You can let the stew settle for a few minutes for grease to rise to top and remove. Remove the bay leaves.
Stir shredded chicken, peas (or omit if using frozen veggies) and parsley into slow cooker or stove top pan. Adjust with salt and pepper to taste.
Make dumplings: whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in large bowl. Microwave milk and butter together until warm, about 1 minute (don’t overheat) using your whisk stir in butter to melt. Stir milk mixture into flour mixture and incorporate until smooth.
Turn slow cooker to high and drop golf size dumplings on top of stew, try and leave about 1/4″ between dumplings. This makes about 18 dumplings. Cover and cook until dumplings have doubled in size, about 35 – 40 minutes.
Turn stove top heat to medium and drop golf size dumplings on top of stew, try and leave about 1/4″ between dumplings. This makes about 18 dumplings. Cover and cook until dumplings have doubled in size, about 30 – 35 minutes.