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I love chicken and dumplings, though I have to admit that I am pretty picky about how they are fixed. The dumplings must be chewy not fluffy. Like noodles not biscuits. The chicken must be shredded. And, dear God, please don’t let there be bones in it. If the above criteria is not met, I probably won’t be eating them.

Since my recipe is just how I like it, I can eat tons of these. In fact, I made these last week and, since I am having another craving, I am making them again. It’s my kitchen and I am going to make what I want.

This is the recipe that my family has always used. Polly, my great-grandparent’s cook, instructed us to allow the dough to sit out on the counter and dry for at least 20 minutes. This drying makes them more noodle like. If you have never had homemade chicken and dumplings, you will find this recipe to be similar to those served at Cracker Barrel, though these are WAY better! After Thanksgiving, you could substitute turkey- another creative way to get rid of all the extra bird.

(Please note- these taste much better than they look in this picture.)

Chicken and Dumplings

Dumplings:

  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/4 cup shortening, chilled
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth

Base:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup self-rising flour
  • 2 (16 oz cans) chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked, shredded chicken breast
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Measure 2 cups flour into a bowl. Cut in shortening with a fork or pastry blender until the pieces are the size of peas. Blend in just enough chicken broth that the dough leaves the sides of the bowl. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface (I use my clean counter top). Knead 2 to 3 times. Roll out dough to 1/8 inch thickness. Using a pizza cutter, cut dough into strips.

Melt butter in a dutch oven. Combine with flour and whisk. Gradually add in the remaining chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the dumplings slowly to the boiling broth, stirring periodically to keep them from sticking to each other and the bottom of the pan. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, cooking dumplings through. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Add milk, pepper, salt and chicken. Heat for another 5 minutes.  Makes 6 servings.

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