Simple Chicken and Dumplings

With all the turkey we had left over from thanksgiving, it’s surprising that we aren’t tired of eating turkey. We think it’s because we have been using it in so many different ways. We had friends over for Truffle Turkey Tetrazzini on the weekend, and made a delicious filo dough pie with the dark meatWe threw together this simple chicken and dumplings on Monday night (subbing turkey for chicken).

turkey and dumplings

It was a great idea for a weeknight because there was enough left for a few lunches. We have found that one way to make a simple dish into something really elegant is to focus on the details, so we diced the celery, carrots, and onions, making sure they were a uniform size. We finished the dish by sprinkling it with freshly cut chives. We wanted a simple and elegant presentation so we used white restaurant bowls, and for visual contrast, dark placemats.

Another thing that makes this a great weeknight meal is that it doesn’t demand your full attention. Other than cutting the vegetables and turkey, you can do other things while it simmers. It’s also gotten pretty chilly in San Francisco the past few days, so the rich, hot broth is the perfect match for the weather.

Simple Chicken and Dumplings
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups onion, diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1.5 quarts chicken or turkey stock
  • 2 tablespoons and 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups roasted chicken, cut into bite-size pieces (sub turkey)
  • 1 sprig of thyme, leaves stripped
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cups milk
  • ¼ cup half and half
  • chives, sliced thin
  • pepper
  1. Heat 4 tablespoons of butter in a large pot, preferably wider than it is tall. Add the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic cloves until they start to become soft. Season with salt and pepper and add the stock. Simmer 10-15 minutes.
  2. Add the turkey to the simmering stock, along with the thyme leaves.
  3. Create a roux by melting one tablespoon of butter and mixing 2 tablespoons of flour. Add a cup of simmering stock to the roux and whisk to make sure there are no lumps. Incorporate the roux to the pan. Allow to simmer on low heat while you prepare the dumpling mixture.
  4. In a small bowl, mix 2 cups of flour, baking powder, egg, salt, and milk. Stir until the mixture is a thick, doughy consistency. Dip a spoon into the simmering broth, then use the hot spoon to scoop out dumplings from the batter and drop them into the simmering stock. Cover the pan and continue to simmer 10-15 minutes, until the dumplings float and are firm.
  5. Stir in half and half, season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve with freshly cut chives.

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