Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

Dumplings

Okay, so my husband Chris is a Southern boy – born and bred. He grew up on macaroni and cheese (from a box, YUCK), mashed potatoes, fried chicken, sweet tea, pulled pork…the works. I on the other hand am still not the biggest fan of Southern food; it’s mostly unhealthy, fried, greasy, processed and bland. I have been making more of an effort though, and some of the food can be made from scratch so I’ve kind of forced some of these menu items to be healthy. The other day I tried making chicken and dumplings for the first time and they were so easy – a complete success! Chris even said they were the best he’d ever had! I did add a couple seasonings that were not traditional to make it a bit more interesting, but overall I really enjoyed this meal too! I’ve actually made it twice already. So below is a pretty standard recipe for chicken and dumplings, plus a few moderations:

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

Two or three good-sized boneless chicken breasts, cooked and chopped/shredded

8 cups chicken broth (to save money, I always buy the chicken bouillon cubes and make my own broth with boiling water)

2 cups all purpose flour (plus extra to flour your surface)

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3 tbsp butter

3/4 cup milk

Chicken & Dumplings 2

– In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the butter – I usually just shave it into the bowl with a knife or spoon, and then rub it into the dry ingredients with my fingertips, the way you would make shortbread. Make sure the butter is well mixed in. Stir in the milk until it forms a ball of dough. Depending on how it’s looking, I usually end up adding extra flour or extra milk until I get that dough-like consistency. You definitely don’t want it to be too sticky or crumbly. 

Roll out the dough onto floured waxed paper (the waxed paper you can skip, but it helps prevent the dough sticking to my counter top) until it’s about 1/4 or 1/2 an inch thick. Then, using a pizza cutter (or a thin knife), slice the dough into squares. I would say no bigger than 2×2 inches but mine always end up various shapes and sizes! Put the cut dumplings onto a plate or more waxed paper, if you need to stack on top of each other make sure there’s enough flour in between to prevent them sticking. 

Bring the chicken broth to a good rolling boil. This is when I add my seasoning – salt, pepper, a little italian seasoning, a little ground coriander. It can really be whatever you want. The rest of the dish is pretty bland so that’s a great base to work from! Once the broth is boiling well (and that is very, very important) drop the dumplings in one by one as it boils, stirring constantly. 

Once all the dumplings are in, you can turn down the heat to medium-low and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. As it’s simmering if the broth looks a little watery (we like ours to be thicker) you can mix a little flour with a little milk and add that to the broth to thicken it up. Just do a little at a time and let the heat help, otherwise if you add too much all you’ll taste is flour. 

Add the cooked chicken to the mix, make sure that’s heated through and serve! What a comforting, cheap and easy dish to make  on a blustery day.

 

 

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

God, My God

I wrote this out this morning, and for some reason felt led to post it on my blog. My prayer is that it encourages you to learn more of who God is, and to speak over whatever you’re facing in faith that He will enable you to overcome your obstacles, to claim victory over your battles, to experience freedom from your strongholds and to inspire faith and action in what He’s calling you to do. God is a good God, He won’t let you fall.

God, my God, I KNOW that You are faithful. I KNOW that we are following the plan that You have laid out for us. This is why I KNOW that You will provide for our every need. We will not fall behind on our bills, we will honor our commitments to pay off our debts, we will not be anxious but we will wait in anticipation and with excitement for You to move. I KNOW that You will provide, I KNOW that You will come through for us. I KNOW that Your faithfulness does not depend on my works or on my perfection. I KNOW that You love me despite my weak faith and multiple shortcomings. You are a GOOD GOD and Your promises You will keep. You are the UNMATCHED KING in every area – Your generosity and desire to bless us are vast, Your faithfulness has no expiration date, Your grace and mercy are limitless. You own everything because You created it all. MY GOD, WHO CAN MATCH YOU? You are the UNMATCHED KING and You are for us, not against us. You are on our side and You will not let us fall. You will hold us up. You will sustain us. You are worthy of every praise that is within us and more.

God, My God

Baby Led Weaning – An Update

I’m sorry I’ve been somewhat inactive in the last week or two, life has been crazy! Baby E cut her first top tooth (although it’s not all the way in yet) and we have been running around with a clingy baby who’s not super keen on sleeping through the night.

Lately I have been giving Eleni things off my plate, as planned, provided that they are not super salty/sugary. She has enjoyed chewing on pieces of chicken and she is still in love with chewy crusts from pizza or bread. I made homemade oven fries (more like potato wedges really) the other night and she loved chewing on those. I didn’t bake them with much salt to begin with, but before I gave one to her I still tried to rub off as much as I could. Tonight we’re having creamy chicken curry with apples in it so I’d love to see her try some curried apple chunks!

Last night we bought some salt-free adult rice cakes (I like that I can break off  longer chunks of these – the little round baby ones I can promise you would be put in whole and get stuck) and this morning when we gave her a piece of one she absolutely loved it! I was surprised, because they are super bland and so far Eleni has loved curry flavors, garlic, tomatoes etc! Maybe it’s a texture thing, who knows. I would love to try spreading something like avocado on a rice cake to see how she’d do with that. There was some gagging, but my husband was right there with her and she did well eventually. I hate the gagging. That’s been the hardest part of Baby Led Weaning for us (even though she still would gag with the purees I was trying to feed her before) – she starts shaking her hands, her eyes water and she gags – I hate it!!! Gagging aside though, I think we’re doing pretty well, I’m just at the stage where it feels like she’ll never eat enough food to be able to wean her completely off of breastmilk and while I know that’s just a stage, I feel like it’s going to last forever!

I will try and update some more when we try new foods/snacks or if we have a major breakthrough!

Baby Led Weaning – An Update