Have I mentioned that I am a procrastinator extraordinaire? Did you know that extraordinaire is one of those rare adjectives that follows its subject? About a month ago, Brandy "tweeted" about wanting a chicken and dumplings recipe. I told her that I had a good one. And it was really easy. And that I should blog about it. And poor Brandy. My proclamation mocked her. Because I did not share my recipe. And she was ready to cook. So...Brandy...this is for you.
When I cook. I only know how to cook for an army. I am not quite sure why. But it's the way I have always cooked. I think that part of it is that leftovers are expected. We usually make a meal of them another night during the week. Michael and my mom will take the leftovers for lunches. When I make grits casserole, the girls will eat it for breakfast.
The other part of it is that I have a husband with the metabolism of
Michael Phelps a teenage boy. And the appetite to prove it. And my girls are closing in on his tail. My metabolism clearly got intimidated. And ran away. Never to be seen again. As it clearly does not answer "Polo" to my "Marco."
But I digress. Which is a habit of a procrastinator extraordinaire. Here are the basic ingredients for our recipe. Which I always double. I use more chicken than is pictured. I had just moved on to the first step before I realized that I forgot a photo of the cast and crew.
And that first step is to cut the chicken into 2 inch-ish pieces. I like the specificity of the "ish." Is specificity a word? Stop yelling "procrastinator." Just whisper it. Under your breath. Behind clenched teeth. Brandy.
When cutting up my chicken, I like for it to still be a little frozen. It makes it really easy to slice. Add all your chicken to a deep frying pan. If you like, you could add some chopped celery and onion. But I don't like. So I don't. Cook your chicken until it is no longer pink. And drain. You know. My original recipe does not say to drain it. I would drain it. Really. I would.
Add your flour to the chicken broth. And mix until it is blended.
Then add the broth to the drained chicken in the frying pan.And add the gravy, half-and-half, bay leaf (which I didn't have on my spice rack. Hey. Honey. Add bay leaves to the grocery list please.), and pepper to the pot.Bring to a boil.
Then add the biscuits. Doesn't this look yummy??
Cook it with the lid on for about 10 - 15 minutes until the broth is thickened. And the dumplings are done.
Now, there is another option. Besides adding green peas to the mixture. Which I personally think is gross. And that peas contaminate the whole meal. But as long as you are not inviting me for dinner, feel free to add peas. Are your teeth still clenched? You know that you can really aggravate your jaw by doing that? And have some nasty headaches.
My mom is not a fan of the dumpling part of chicken and dumplings. So...you can leave it out. Chicken and dumplings. Hold the dumpling. So, what I do for her is to cook biscuits. And then serve the chicken mixture over that. And if you are carbo loading, you can always serve your chicken and dumplings over a biscuit. Or if you are like me. And are enthralled with watching your hips spread. Chicken and dumplings over a biscuit is just divine.
Here is my easy peasy recipe:
2 packages of boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 10 thighs)
1 can of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
4 tbs all purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
2 (12oz) jars of chicken gravy
2 cups of half-and-half
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp pepper
Cut the chicken into pieces. Cook chicken (you can add celery and/or onions if you like) for about 6-8 minutes - or until no longer pink. Drain.
Blend flour into the chicken broth.
Add broth and remaining ingredients (except the biscuits) - you could also add a cup of frozen peas - and bring to a boil.
Flatten the biscuits and cut each one into 6 pieces. When the chicken mixture is boiling, add the biscuit pieces. And then cover. Reduce the heat to medium-low. And cook 10-15 minutes.
Remove bay leaf and serve.
So...what about you? Do you have a favorite chicken recipe? A favorite comfort food? Does your family eat leftovers? Is chicken and dumplings a Southern thing? What are you procrastinating?
Theme song: Little Feat - Dixie Chicken