I still don't have an exact recipe, but I can help you make the best chicken and dumplings. The secrets are simple - shredded chicken, moist dumplings, and turmeric. Yes, you read that correctly. Turmeric. I promise, it is fantastic. Even my picky little eaters eat seconds and sometimes thirds of this delicious meal.
Mommy the Maid's Chicken and Dumplings
You will need:
Shredded Chicken - you can buy a pre-made rotisserie chicken, roast a chicken (and use leftovers from last night), or like I did tonight, throw a bunch of frozen wings that Steven's mom gave us into the crock pot with some garlic, pepper, and salt. I usually roast a chicken and serve it with veggies and mashed potatoes and then shred the leftovers and either freeze or throw in the refrigerator for chicken and dumplings another night. Makes this meal super easy to whip up on a busy night.
Chicken Broth - I prefer to use the Chicken Bullion Base from Wild Tree. My friend introduced me, and as you will see in this post, I am in LOVE with many of their products. You can also grab a box or two cans at the store or use your own homemade stock or broth.
Chopped Onions, Garlic, and Celery - (optional) fresh or dehydrated
Baking Mix - I use a homemade blend similar to this recipe, but you can use Bisquick or another store-bought mix.
Milk - 1/3- 1 cup depending the amount you are making. For our family of 4 we usually use about 2/3 cups.
Spices: Salt, pepper, garlic salt, and turmeric. Or some sort of version of all that. I use my collection of Wild Tree products.
Oil - very small mount of coconut, safflower,or grapeseed oil. Those are my favorites but extra-virgin olive oil or even vegetable oil will work.
Drizzle a tablespoon or so oil into the bottom of a heated stock pot. Add the chopped veggies and aromatics if using. I usually put a pinch of salt on top to help pull out the flavors.
Shred the chicken well. Using leftovers or cooking in the crockpot all day makes this task a snap. I generally start with two forks for shredding, but usually end up using my hands or having the kids help me. Just be sure to remove all bones if there are any. Add chicken to the pot and stir around for a minute.
Then add enough chicken broth and water to cover the chicken and then about 3 times more. I used about 8 cups each here, but this is a huge pot and a lot of chicken and dumplings.
Add in some salt and pepper to taste and about 1/4 teaspoon - 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric. NOTE- turmeric can stain is used as a dye so be very careful about wiping up spills right away. Bring this to a gentle boil over medium high heat.
Now make the dumplings. The general rule of dumplings is 1 cup baking mix to 1/3 cup milk. We usually double this as we LOVE dumplings. I then add a good dose of pepper, garlic salt (or something similar), and about 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric. Feel free to cut back on that amount if you are worried you won't like the taste. You can always adjust it next time.
The secret to dumplings is to boil them GENTLY. They need to be large enough that they don't melt away during cooking, but small enough to cook all the way though without being doughy. I usually use two large tablespoons to scoop the batter and scrap it into the gently boiling water. Don't let them plop. Just gently set them on the water.
And there you have it. Delicious chicken and dumplings made from scratch like Grandma used to make. It is sure to please a hungry crowd. Enjoy!