Dumplings are the quintessential comfort food. Dumplings are made of a simple dough that is steamed or boiled, and they’ve dropped. These basic dumplings are wonderful in a chicken or beef stew or casserole. Add parsley or chives to the mixture, if you like. The key is to not peek into the pan while the dumplings are cooking.
The dumplings need to gently steam in the simmering stew to result in a light texture. Use cake flour: Using cake flour in place of all-purpose flour will also help the dumplings be lighter, as cake flour has less gluten than regular flour. To coax more flavour into the stew base, we brown the chicken pieces before cooking them in the stew.
Browning the flour in a roux with rendered chicken fat will give the base more flavour while thickening the stew. For a creamier Chicken and Dumpling Recipe, swap the half-and-half for cream, adding more or less to taste. Add half-and-half as it feels like the best of both worlds. If your dumpling dough is dry, add additional milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough comes together.
Avoid the temptation to check the status of your dumplings every two minutes as they cook. After all, the whole idea is that in addition to cooking in the broth, they also steam gently.
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion – chopped
- 5 large carrots – carrots
- 5 celery ribs – chopped
- 6 cloves garlic – minced
- 2 tsp salt – plus more to taste
- 1 tsp fresh black pepper
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 8 cups water
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 pound fresh or frozen peas
- 1 cup half and half
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley – plus more for serving
- 1 tbsp fresh minced thyme – plus more for serving
For the Dumplings;
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme
- 2/4 cup milk
- 4 tbsp butter – melted
- Melt the butter and add the olive oil to a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat.
- Add the onion, carrots, and celery to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, or until vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the garlic to the vegetables and sauté for 1 minute, stirring often.
Sprinkle with the salt, pepper, and flour, stirring well to combine.
- Cook for 1 minute, stirring often to prevent burning.
- Slowly whisk the water or chicken stock and dry white wine in with the vegetables and bring to a boil.
- Add the chicken, sugar, and bay leaves, cover, and reduce heat to low.
- Simmer for approximately 25 minutes, or until chicken is fully cooked and vegetables have softened.
- Meanwhile, as the soup simmers, prepare the dumplings.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and thyme.
- Use a spoon or spatula to dig a well, or hole, in the middle of the flour mixture.
- Add the milk and butter to the centre. Use a wooden spoon to mix together into a giant dough ball. Set aside.
- Once the chicken is fully cooked, remove from the pot and allow to rest until cool enough to shred.
- Add the peas and the chicken to the pot.
- Use a large cookie scoop to form equal-sized dumplings.
- Add each dumpling, one at a time, directly into the simmering soup, each in a different part of the pot.
- Once each dumpling has been added to the pot, gently press them down to submerge beneath the broth. Cover and reduce heat to low.
- Cook dumplings for approximately 20 minutes.
- Once the dumplings are fully cooked, remove the cover and gently add half and half, parsley, and chopped thyme. Stir to combine.
- Best served hot. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley, thyme, or hot sauce, if desired.