Chicken & Dumpling Soup
This is total winter comfort food at its best; light and fluffy dumplings bobbing around in rich broth. With a scattering of feathery dill--fresh, with a sweet-sour lashing--it's the ultimate perfection. Best yet, you can use leftover holiday turkey bones and meat for it!
|1-3/4 to 2 hours|
For the broth:
- 1 chicken about 5 pounds, washed and trimmed of access fat
- 3 quarts cold water
- 2 medium carrots halved
- 1 medium yellow onion skin-on and quartered
- 2 celery ribs with leaves, halved
- 1 head garlic halved lengthwise
- 5 sprigs parsley
- 5 sprigs thyme
- 5 srprigs dill big branchy sprigs
- 1 t-spoon black peppercorns whole
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 t-spoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon butter
For the vegetables:
- 1 medium carrot chopped
- 1 celery rib chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh minced dill
For the dumplings:
- 1-3/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 t-spoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons butter melted
- Approx. 1 cup whole milk
- Heat the butter in a large stock pot (12-quarts at least) until hot and sizzling. Sear any of the giblets from the chicken in the hot fat, except the liver, until they’re browned and caramelized on all sides. Pour over about 1 quart of the water to shock the offal and cool the pan down.
- Lower the chicken into the pot, tumble over the vegetables, scatter over the herbs and peppercorns, and pour over the remaining water. It should be enough water that it barely covers the chicken, so add a little more if the chicken isn’t submerged.
- Bring to a boil, season with the salt, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1½ hours.
- After the chicken is done simmering, remove it from the pot and set aside. Strain the liquid in the pot into a large bowl, through a fine-mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth. Return the strained liquid back to the pot and place over low heat to keep warm. Discard the solids from the colander. Skim most of the fat off the surface of the soup and discard this, too. Remove the skin from the chicken and shred all of the meat into bite-size pieces, returning the meat to the pot as you do so.
- Once all of the chicken is shredded and back in, plunk in the remaining chopped carrot and celery and simmer while you make the dumplings.
- Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl until combined, then pour in the melted butter and milk. Stir this together just until combined, making sure you don’t over mix; otherwise they will be tough and too dense.
- Return the soup to a rolling boil and drop in tiny dollops of the dumplings (t-spoon sized drops, or use about half of a 0.50-ounce scooper). Cover the soup, turn the heat to low, and simmer for 12 – 15 minutes. Don’t uncover the pot while the dumplings cook—the steam helps to cook them evenly and keep the soft and pillowy.
- Once it’s done simmering, ladle the soup into serving bowls and scatter them evenly with the ¼ cup of minced dill and eat in total comfort.
- To make this using leftovers from Thanksgiving, simmer the turkey carcass in the water in place of the whole chicken. Continue on with the recipe as noted, obviously throwing in leftover shredded turkey in lieu of chicken.