Monday, August 27, 2012

Cracker Barrel Chicken and Dumplins

This was another amazing dish. Had none left over. My husband kept saying oh my this is great. It was very simple too. I felt like I was eating at the Cracker Barrel. I got this recipe out of the first Top Secret Restaurant Recipes. Love that book, need to get the second one.

Chicken and Broth
3 quarts water
1 3-4 pound whole chicken, cut up
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 small onion, sliced
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and quartered
1 bay leaf
4-6 whole parsley leaves
1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1 tbsp lemon juice

2 cups all- purpose flour
1 tbsp backing powder
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 cup plus 2 tbsp milk

Bring the water to a boil in a large pot. Add the chicken, 1 tsp salt, onion, celery, garlic, bay leaf, and parsley to the pot. Reduce heat to simmer and cook chicken, uncovered, for 2 hours. The liquid will reduce.
When the chicken is done, remove it from the pot and set it aside. Strain the stock to remove all the vegetables (I left in because I like the veggies in mine). You want the stock and the chicken, so toss everything else out.
Pour 1 1/2 quarts (6 cups) of the stock back into the pot (can keep rest of the stock for other recipes, can be frozen). Add black pepper, remaining 1/2 tsp salt and the lemon juice, then reheat the stock over medium heat while preparing the dumplings.
For the dumplins, combine the flour, backing powder, 1 1/4 tap salt and the milk in a medium bowl. Stir well until smooth, then let the dough rest for 5-10 minutes. Roll the dough out onto a floured surface to about a 1/2 inch thickness.
Cut the dough into 1/2 inch squares and drop each square into the simmering stock. Use all the dough. The dumplins will first swell and then slowly shrink as they partially dissolve to thicken the stock into a white gravy. Simmer for 20-30 minutes until thick. Stir often.
While the stock is thickening, the chicken will have become cool enough to handle. Tear all the meat from the bones and remove the skin. Cut the chicken into bite-size or a little bigger than bite-size. Drop them into the pot. Discard the skin and bones. Continue to simmer the chicken and dumplins for another 5-10 minutes, but don't stir too vigorously or the chicken will shred. You want big chunks in the end.
When the gravy had reached the desired consistency, ladle four portions onto plates and serve hot. Serve with your choice of steamed vegetables, if desired (I roasted some)...

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