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Dumplings

My husband loves chicken and dumplings and I haven't been able to create a decent dumpling after many attempts. Does anyone out there have a good recipe for dumplings?

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  1. I use a biscuit dough, made from scratch or from a mix. Drop spoonfuls into simmering chicken broth. I also enhance the broth with carrots, onion, potato and celery.

    4 Replies
    1. re: powillie

      I know it sounds like a cop out, but use Biquick and their directions on the package. I have great results (just mix in milk?) with one exception of browning on top. Keep the lid on while they are cooking atop the stew, then if you want a little top browning, brush with butter and place uncovered in the broiler until browning occurs.

      1. re: kc girl

        I've also used the recipe on the Bisquick box. As long as you don't let them touch and keep the lid on the pot while they are cooking, they turn out light and fluffy. Also, sometimes I will add some poultry seasoning to the mix or even some fresh herbs chopped into the mix.

        1. re: mschow

          I think Bisquick makes the worst biscuits in the world and the pnacakes are awful...but it makes great dumplings. I just follow the directions on the box and add some fresh herbs (thyme or rosemary), sometimes I'll grate some sharp cheddar or parmesan in the mix.

      2. re: powillie

        So I don't use Bisquick, I'm a Jiffy fan simply because Jiffy is cheaper. But I haven't noticed a difference between the two in taste and I often use my vintage Bisquick cookbook with the Jiffy Mix. I do the same thing as mschow, and spiff up the dumplings with herbs and spices to compliment the stew I'm topping.

      3. The two most important steps is making good dumplings are proper ingredients/preparation and proper sizing/cooking.
        I mix a cup of flour (sifted) and 2 teaspoons of baking powder with a couple pinches of salt, into which I drop a mixture of one teaspoon of veg. oil and enough milk to create a drop batter. Something a bit heavier than a pancake batter but not as heavy as biscuit dough.
        I use a large soup spoon to drop the batter into my boiling liquid (it's gotta be boiling all the while the dough is dropped in and the dough should be distributed at various points throughout the surface of your soup/stew - not dropped all in the same place) and then cover the pot and lower the heat (so it doesn't boil over) and DON'T LIFT THE LID for 10 - 12 minutes. That feeds 4 - 6 people.
        I'm sorry I can't give you step by step recipe instructions. My grandmother taught me how to make these and I never saw a recipe. Just remember that the dumplings are going to float in the soup/stew and cook in the steam of the steam created between the pot's lid and the top of the soup/stew.

        2 Replies
        1. re: todao

          Hi todao,

          I tried your recipe and I think I've got it. At first I made big dumplings, but when I got to the end I made smaller ones. My problem was that I didnt let them cook long enough. The smaller ones had the right chewy consistency. The larger ones were floury inside. My hubby was very happy with the small ones. Now I know to cook them longer. Thanks so much.

          1. re: heartfood

            I suggest using a cookie scoop to portion the drop dough. It's quick and they cook evenly because they're roughly the same size this way. I use melted butter and only a teaspoonand half baking powder in the drop dough, but otherwise the same recipe as todao, works great.

        2. The recipe I use is based on the one from America's Test Kitchen: http://areyouhungryyet.blogspot.com/2...

          1. When I don't have time to prepare dumplings from scratch, I grab a can of flaky biscuits (you know the ones - they have layers) and separate each biscuit into 3 or 4 layers. I lightly coat the layers in flour and dump them in the pot. I've had really good results with this. Not quite as good as homemade, but sometimes shortcuts are necessary in busy times.

            1. Most of the recommendations are for light, floating dumplings. Are those the kind you want? Don't some styles of this dish use a denser 'dumpling', one that is more like a thick noodle?

              5 Replies
              1. re: paulj

                I enjoy making Kaese Spaetzle which is actually a small dumpling, cut using a Spaetzle cutter, that uses eggs as an ingredient. But I prepare it as a side dish, not as a component of stew. or soups. I think paulj makes a good point here. If you'd care to consider some options in dumpling preparation, read a few spaetzle recipes or some of the egg dumpling recipes and see if those are closer to what you're interested in.

                http://www.cooks.com/rec/search/0,1-0...

                http://www.cooks.com/rec/search/0,1-0...

                1. re: paulj

                  I am looking for a more dense texture. I will try to leave out the leavening agent and see what happens. (as soon as the weather gets cooler again).

                  1. re: heartfood

                    Hi heartfood,
                    I love chicken and dumplings. My wife makes them and they're fantastic (she learned from her mother who learned from her mother etc etc). I've got her recipe on my lap and will share (she says it ain't 'mainstream' C&Ds, but its the way we do it...)

                    First start out with a whole chicken, place in a pot with enough water to cover, bring to a boil, and simmer until the chicken is slightly overdone (add more water if necessary).
                    Remove the chicken, set aside until later.
                    Keep the broth handy on the stove.
                    Dumplings:
                    3C flour
                    2 eggs
                    1 tsp baking powder
                    milk
                    Mix the flour and baking powder, beat the eggs and add to dry. Mix. Add enough milk to get a 'stretchy' dough.
                    Use your hands and extra flour to flatten the dough to about 1/4 inch.
                    Use a pizza cutter, and extra flour to keep everything from sticking, and cut into 3/4" strips. Cut the other way to get 3/4" squares.
                    Bring broth to a boil and drop the dough squares in, stirring lightly (don't worry, it'll all thicken up). Lower to a simmer until the dumplings float.
                    Season with salt and plenty of pepper.
                    Debone the chicken, stir the meat into the pot.

                    Voila.

                    Even better the next day heated up...ummmm

                    We also use the same dumpling recipe in beef stew; about 10 minutes before serving the stew, we make baseball-sized 'dumplings', sit them on top of the stew, cover the pot, and steam until done.

                      1. re: paulj

                        The Spanish have something similar, called andrajos ('rages'). Most recipes call for making a stew of rabbit or chicken, and then adding squares of pasta, such as cut lasagna dough. I've used broken paparadelle (inch wide noodles).

                        In this video from Spanish TV
                        http://video.aol.com/video-detail/coc...
                        the stew is made with 'liebre', hare. The 'noodle' is a simple flour and water dough, that is rolled out like a flour tortilla, and then cooked for about a minute floating on top of the stew. It is then broken up and stirred into the stew, and served.

                  2. Heh. I use Bisquick also. So fast easy and good. And like other posters have mentioned, the recipe is right on the box. I've tried making the dumplings from scratch a few times and they didn't turn out as well. I'm busier now and if I don't use bisquick I probably wouldn't get around to making them at all if you know what I mean. I also use bisquick a lot in June and July for shortcakes. The recipe is usually on the box but I cut out a recipe and have it squirreled away just in case. The shortcakes might not be from scratch but they are sure better than the sponge cake, angel food cake and pound cake people buy already made to put under their berries.

                    1. When I saw your post my first thought was which part of the country do you live in? Here's what happened to me....

                      I moved from central PA to NC and got a job cooking in the Belmont Abbey Monastery. The menu left for me for dinner soon after I started working there had chicken and dumplings on it. So I made chicken stew with fluffy dumplings, that's what I was familiar with in the area I moved from. The monks loved it, there was none left. the next day my boss said, "I don't know what you made last night but that wasn't chicken and dumplings." She went on to explain that chicken and dumplings had flat square pieces of dough that puffed a little when simmered. I said, "But that's chicken pot pie!" All my PA Dutch was showing. She said, "No, chicken pot pie is stew topped with pie crust." and I said, "But that's half a chicken pie!" We knew right then there was a translation problem. It continued with other dishes like creamed potatoes. I made scalloped potatoes and she meant mashies. But it all worked out and she decided it didn't matter if our regional differences produced different dishes as long as the results were yummy and the monks were happy!

                      1. If you like the denser, sticky-in-the-mouth feel of dumplings, consider making a potato gnocchi dumpling. Using the Yukon gold or other creamy texture potato rather than russet makes for a dense dumpling.
                        If using Russet potato, use a little extra flour, add one egg, and add a little levening. These are better in a stew mix, IMO.

                        Basic gnocchi recipe, but there are many . . . .
                        http://www.e-rcps.com/pasta/rcp/gnocc...

                        You can also add some potatoes (strained through a ricer) with the Bisquick mix to get a denser dumpling.

                        1. Joy of Cooking has a no fail scratch recipe, please dont use bisquick(or any other mix), or storebought biscuit dough. The extra effort is well worth it imho.

                          I either form the dumplings into balls, or roll out the dough, and cut it into squares before adding it to the top of the soup and covering.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: swsidejim

                            I always make this one too. However, i think the OP is looking for a dense dumpling, which these are NOT... so nice and fluffy.

                          2. I am not a rubbery-dumpling fan, though I'll eat'em if that's what's up. Mom's dumplings were always just drop biscuits dropped into the stew instead of onto a pan, and if they touched each other or went kinda formless nobody cared. One variant I want to try is from a North Carolina cookbook, in which you make regular biscuit dough, roll it out, and cut strips from it and drop those in. Sounds like kind of a hybrid, and likely pretty good. However, here in Sunny SoCal the chicken-and-dumplings weather is a month or so off...

                            1. First find out what he means by "dumplings" because in the American chicken-and-dumplings lexicon there are at least two kinds. 1) A soft biscuit-type dough is dropped from a spoon into boiling stock. 2) (Southern-type dumplings) Dough is rolled out and cut into strips like fat noodles which are dropped into boiling stock. If you want the latter I have my great-grandmother's recipe which surely dates back to the early 1800's. I suspect this kind of dumpling came to be when our Scotch-Irish ancestors were neighbors with Germans, back in frontier days, and learned from them to make these noodley dumplings. In some parts of the South this is also called chicken and pastry. Related, in northern Maryland and southern Pennsylvania "slippery pot pie" is chicken and gravy with big flat square noodles.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Querencia

                                I was such a lucky child I had two grandmothers who fixed them each a different way!
                                I prefer your number two as does my family so that is what I usually make and they make a frozen product that is great if you don't have time to roll out dough. It is in the freezer section next to the breads.

                              2. I make them often and have grown up with some wonderful Southern cooks making them. O use rolled out canned biscuits form a can cut into long strips I use a little flour when rolling out. Recently as I always am in a hurry I just started cutting the biscuit into 4-5 pieces with kitchen sheers. I have also had really good results with cutting flour tortillas in to strips and dropping them in. Some of my Southren aunts have started using the tortilla and think it's better than biscuits.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Analisas mom

                                  I have been using flour tortillas, too, and think they are pretty good. Not too heavy, like the biscuit toppings can be.

                                2. I am looking for a no fail airy and fluffy dumpling recipe. Anyone have one?

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: itryalot

                                    Have you tried a drop biscuit recipe?

                                    1. re: itryalot

                                      This just popped up on King Arthur Flour today:
                                      http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/R...

                                      Ignore the part about turkey pot pie.