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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Going for the "Go To" Meals # 9: Chicken and Dumplings


It's been a few weeks since I last posted about a "Go To" meal. Between Thanksgiving, out of town trips and crappy Internet service (Yes, I mean YOU, Comcast!), I just haven't been able to put a decent "Go To" post together. I can't even spend much time on this one, because my kitchen is under water. It seems that every time I turn on the kitchen sink faucet, water streams out from under the cabinet. I'm no expert, but that can't be good. I've already gone through three rolls of Bounty! If ever I needed a big, quick and easy pot of comfort food, tonight was the night! This chicken and dumplings dish fit the bill.
The recipe for this dish comes from none other than the doyenne of color coordinated tablescapes.....Sandra Lee. Now, wipe those smirks off of your faces. We can't all be Julia Child in the kitchen every night, especially with no running water. Besides, while I am not crazy about a lot of Sandra's recipes, she does have some pretty good ideas. This is one of them.
The foundation of this dish is a store-bought rotisserie chicken from the supermarket. I used pre-chopped onions, carrots and celery, also from the supermarket. You certainly could chop your own, but.....why? Once you've added in the biscuits and gravy, you'll hardly even notice the vegetables! I tossed in a handfull of egg noodles, so that their starch would thicken up the broth a bit more. Also, I adjusted the recipe so that it could all be prepared in one pot. One less pan to wash.
I was pleasantly surprised with the way it turned out. The chicken stayed moist, and the sauce was quite tasty. Using refrigerator biscuits for the dumplings worked great. They tasted like real homemade dumplings. A word of caution: Make sure you use a big enough pot for this dish. Those biscuit dumplings really swell up when they hit the broth!
There was one odd thing, though. The whole time I was making this meal, I had this silly song stuck in my head from the musical, Grease. You know, the one about Sandra Dee? I just couldn't shake it, so I made up my own little variation. If you want to sing along, you can find a midi file here. I'm waaaay too easily amused!

Look at Me, I'm Sandra Lee,
Full of creativity.
Do what I've said,
And you will be well fed...
Because, I'm Sandra Lee!

Chicken and Dumplings
Adapted from Sandra Lee

1 whole store-bought roast chicken (about 2 pounds)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 container (7 ounces) chopped onions
6 (14 ounce) cans low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 container (14 ounces) pre-cut carrot sticks, chopped
1 container (14 ounces) pre-cut celery sticks, chopped
1 jar (12 ounces) prepared chicken gravy
1 roll (16.3 ounces) homestyle buttermilk biscuit dough

  • Remove skin from chicken and shred meat into large pieces. Set aside.

  • In a large pot or Dutch oven, add oil and butter and heat over medium heat. When oil is hot, add chopped onions, carrots and celery and saute until soft.
  • Add broth, poultry seasoning, salt, pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer for about 10 minutes to soften vegetables, and then add shredded chicken. Continue to simmer while making dumplings.

  • While stew is simmering, prepare dumplings. Open can and remove biscuits. With a knife, cut each biscuit into 4 pieces. Set aside.

  • Stir in chicken gravy.

  • With the stew still simmering over low heat, stir in dumplings a few at a time. Once all dumplings are in to pot, cover with a tight fitting lid and cook for 10 more minutes.

  • Ladle into bowls and serve piping hot.


1 comment:

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Oh, I love this recipe, Susan, as much as I love the whimsical name of your blog! Cheers, from another Susan.