Chicken and Dumplings

Sunday dinner — Tiffani Thiessen’s Pull Up A Chair cookbook was a Christmas gift and apparently so was the ’tis the season cold I had last week. Huge ugh! Still slightly lingering around, Tiffani’s chicken and dumplings recipe sounded perfect. The chicken is succulent, quantity of flavors and a touch of dry sherry. Apparently recipes including alcohol is a recurring theme for me throughout 2018 and the New Year, Lol. 

My Mom used to cook chicken and dumplings with Campbell’s chicken & rice soup, boiled chicken water, salt and Bisquick’s dumpling recipe. Distinctly remember my Dad was not fond of the dumplings, he liked the broth though. 

This recipe does require a little kitchen time — your taste buds will thank you! 

#sundaydinner #inspiredtotrynewrecipes #foodforthesoul 

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped 
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick 
  • 1 small bulb fennel, trimmed, quartered and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick 
  • 1 parsnip, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick 
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 10 tablespoons all-purpose flour 
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry 
  • 4 1/2 cups chicken broth 
  • 4 to 5 sprigs fresh thyme 
  • 3 to 4 sprigs fresh Italian parsley 
  • 2 bay leaves 
Dumplings:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder 
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk 
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted 
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh Italian parsley 
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill 

Directions:

For the stew: Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add half of the chicken and cook until golden on both sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken. Set aside.

Add the butter to the same pot and melt over medium-high heat. Add the onion and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the carrots, fennel and parsnip and cook until just tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and when it releases its fragrance, stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sherry and stir, scraping up any bits stuck to the pot. Add the broth and stir to combine.

Tie the thyme, parsley and bay leaves together with kitchen twine, drop the bundle into the broth and add the chicken, taking care to fully immerse it in the liquid. Bring the stew to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the chicken is fully cooked, about 1 hour.

Remove the pot from the heat and transfer the chicken to a cutting board. Remove the bundle of herbs and discard. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove the skin and bones and discard. Tear the meat into bite-size pieces. Using a skimmer or wide spoon, skim the fat from the surface of the sauce in the pot. Return the chicken and any drippings to the pot and bring the stew to a simmer.

For the dumplings: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda and pepper. Add the buttermilk, butter, thyme, parsley and dill and stir to form a thick, very sticky dough.

Using your hands, roll the dough into balls about the size of a golf ball. Drop the dough balls into the stew spaced about 1/4 inch apart. Cover and simmer over low heat until the dumplings are firm and cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Bourbon Pecan Pie

Happy Holidays! I never cared for pecan pie for a couple reasons… always seemed dry, too sweet or too heavy. So, for years I skipped it at parties & holidays. Baked pies over the years but not this one. A huge fan of Food Network and The Cooking Channel, Dinner at Tiffani’s aired a holiday special. I immediately printed the recipe. OMG….delicious! Finally understand why people like pecan pie. Perfect balance and not dry : )

I always love making homemade whipped cream. Great for dipping fruit too… if you can refrain from eating it by the spoonful! 

IMG_8876

Ingredients

Pecan Pie:
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups light corn syrup
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 2 rolled frozen pie crusts, thawed according to package directions
  • 3 cups whole pecans
  • 5 large eggs, lightly beaten
Vanilla Whipped Cream:
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Directions:

Special equipment: two 9-inch pie plates

For the pie: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the corn syrup, sugar, bourbon, salt and vanilla bean paste. Whisk until mixed and the sugar is dissolved, 2 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool.

Unroll the pie crusts and press into two 9-inch pie plates. Trim the excess around the rims and then crimp the edges. Evenly divide the pecans between the pie crusts. Set the pie plates on a large baking sheet.

Whisk the eggs into the cooled sugar mixture and pour it over the pecans in both pie plates. Bake the pies until they are mostly set but still slightly jiggly in the center, 40 to 50 minutes. Let cool for at least 20 minutes before slicing.

For the whipped cream: Put the cream in the bowl of a stand mixer and whip until foamy. Add the sugar and vanilla bean paste, and whip until soft peaks form. Be careful not to overbeat, or the cream will become grainy.

Serve slices of pecan pie with a dollop of whipped cream.