Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Little Slice of Fall

I was nostalgic as I peered into the pot.  I'm not exactly sure when I perfected my recipe.  I can not describe how great it smelled to have Chicken and Dumplings simmering on the stove and the smell of wet foliage floating in through the open window.  It was a little slice of Fall.

My mind wandered as I stirred the pot, I thought back to learning how to cook.  When I left my parents nest I had a basic set of skills.  We were a family of five and did the best with what we had.  I could pretty much whip up anything with hamburger in it.  I knew how to cut up and onion and make pasta.  I was a pro at cooking for five.  I had done it since I could remember.  Learning how to cook other things came slowly.

I first starting cooking things from a box.  Grocery stores now days are filled with easy to make meals that come nicely packaged in a box.  They also came with lots of preservatives and other things I can't seem to pronounce.  My first Chicken and Dumplings was from a box.  It came with a can of chicken stew and a pouch of baking mix that you add to it and bake.  It was tasty but as my skills improved so did my confidence.  Soon I became adventurous.  Thanks to the Hubby for always eating it or mostly eating it!

The last three dumplings.

   Today I made a short cut and used canned broth and poached the chicken breast.  If I have the time I use a whole chicken and make the stock but I didn't have a whole chicken and I was way to lazy to go to the grocery store.  Or leave the house in that matter.  So basically I used what I had.

I poached the chicken in three cans of chicken broth.  When the chicken was done I took it out and let it cool for shredding while I put the stock aside for later.  Then I sautéed some onion, celery, carrots, and a clove of garlic.  When they got soft I added the chicken stock back along with a pinch of oregano, thyme and a bay leaf.  I shredded the chicken and added that back in.  Then let that simmer for about twenty minutes while made the dumpling mix.  Most of the time I use Bisquick, since I was out of that I used this substitution recipe from Erika Jurney except I used butter instead of Crisco.  I also added 1/2 a teaspoon of garlic powered and a teaspoon of poultry seasoning.  After I made the dumpling mix I used the dumpling recipe from the back of the box, or the website if you don't actually have the box.  I scooped them out with a mini disher or other wise known as mini ice cream scoop.  The instructions say 10 minutes with the lid on and off but I usually find that 8 works well for me.  Probably since I use the mini scoop.

It didn't occur to me to take a picture of the bowl while it was full.
I was to busy stuffing myself to think about that.  

I am a floater kind of a person.  Not that I mean to offend anyone but if you are a fan of sinkers then you are just a fan of Chicken Noodle Soup.  

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