Chicken and Dumplings

This is such a classic dish in my mind.  I remember watching an old boyfriend’s grandmother make this and then asking her a ton of questions writing it all down so I could make it myself.

Here is how I make ours:

Boil a pound of chicken tenders/breasts for about 25 minutes (or until cooked through) in about 8 cups of water.

Remove the chicken when cooked and add 2 chicken bouillon cubes, 1/4 cup each finely chopped onion, celery and carrots and boil approximately 10 minutes until veggies are soft.

In a saucepan brown 1/4 cup of flour stirring constantly (this was one of the tricks his grandmother did).  Remove from heat and place in a glass bowl with 1 TBSP cornstarch.  Mix well.  Add about 1 cup of the hot chicken stock and stir the mixture until smooth.  Add to the chicken/veggie stock and bring to a boil whisking until it starts to thicken (approx. 2-3 minutes).  Add the chopped chicken into the pot and 4 TBSP. heavy cream.

Make the dumplings using 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1 TBSP baking powder and 1 TBSP cornmeal into a bowl and mixing well.  In a small bowl add 3/4 cup milk and 1 egg.  Mix well and combine with the flour mixture mixing just until combined.

Drop teaspoonful dumpling mixture into simmering chicken stock, cover and cook for 3 minutes.  Remove with a slotted spoon and repeat until all dumplings are cooked.  Serve the gravy over the dumplings in a bowl!  Delicious!

Step by step here:

1 lb chicken breast or tenders

8 cups water

2 chicken bouillon cubes

¼ cup chopped onion

¼ cup chopped carrots

¼ cup chopped celery

¼ cup flour

2 Tbsp. cornstarch

Dumplings:

1 ½ cups flour

1 Tbsp. cornmeal

1 Tbsp. baking powder

¾ cup milk

1 egg

Salt and pepper to taste

Boil the chicken in the water approximately 25 minutes (or until cooked through). Remove the cooked chicken and cube it.

Add the bouillon cubes and vegetables. Gently boil approximately 10 minutes until veggies are soft

Brown ¼ cup flour in a frying pan stirring constantly until browned

Place browned flour in a glass bowl and add 2 Tbsp. cornstarch and mix

Add 1 cup of hot chicken stock and stir until smooth

Add to chicken stock/veggie mixture and boil gently while whisking for 2-3 minutes until sauce thickens slightly and no lumps of flour mixture

Add the chicken into the pot and keep at a slow simmer

Dumplings:

Mix the flour, cornmeal and baking powder

Mix the milk and egg in a separate bowl and add to the flour mixture

Stir just until moistened through.

Drop teaspoonful of dumpling mixture around the chicken pot approximately 5 at a time and cover. Let steam cook for 4 minutes and then remove and repeat until the dumpling mixture is gone.

Serve the dumplings in a bowl with the chicken sauce over the top.

Lemon Lime Soda Pound Cake

IMG_4971
It doesn’t get much easier than this!  This is the perfect Pound Cake, full of butter flavor, lemon flavor and moist!
These make great gifts, dessert for a party, treat for tea time, brunch, or anytime really.
The Teen Queen decided to make a batch tonight.  No one in the house complained that’s for sure 🙂
Super Easy to make:
 
1 1/2 cups butter
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
2 TBSP lemon extract
1/3 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup of lemon lime soda
3 cups of flour
 
Cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs mixing after each one. Mix in the extract, juice and soda. Add the flour a cup at a time and mix until incorporated.
 
Spoon into very well greased and floured loaf pans (2 regular or 4 mini).
 
Bake at 325 for approximately 45 minutes (obviously shorter for the mini loaves). A toothpick should come out clean when finished

Grandma Ruth’s Preserve Thumbprint cookies

These cookies are delicious!  Rich buttery flavor with the touch of fruity sweetness from the preserves.

The man’s mother makes a cookie tray for each of her children.  These are one of her cookies and my favorite by far!  This year she turned 80 and has realized it’s too much work to make so many cookies.  She made a 3 ring binder for each of her grandchildren with all of her recipes and a beautiful handwritten not to each of them.  What a special gift!!

Last night we made her thumbprint cookies.  This was my first shot at making these and while not as pretty as hers (which are always perfectly round), they taste the same!  We are bringing them to a family party tonight.

These are ridiculously simple with easy ingredients and dough that is perfect to work with!

2 Cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 cup butter softened

2 eggs, separated

1/8 tsp. salt

1 tsp. vanilla

finely chopped pecans (or walnuts) to roll cookies in

Any flavor fruit preserves (I used apricot and raspberry)

Preheat the oven to 350F.  In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, butter, egg yolks, salt and vanilla.  Beat at low speed scraping the bowl often until smooth (about 2 minutes).

Shape rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into 1-inch balls.

In  small bowl whisk the egg whites until foamy (this is clear with many bubbles)

Dip each ball into the whites and then into the finely chopped nuts.

Place about 1 inch apart on greased cookie sheets (or parchment/silpat)

Make a depression in the center of each cookie with the back of the teaspoon.

Bake for 8 minutes, remove carefully and place a small teaspoon of preserves in the center.  Return to oven and bake for approximately 7-9 more minutes (or until lightly browned on the edges).

Makes about 36 cookies!

 

Kitchen Tips

IMG_4135 (2)

I recently posted two tips I use to keep our busy lives rolling.  The first tip was to let family members (children/husband) choose a meal for the week.  This is a HUGE load off my plate every week in our house with each child picking a meal and the man choosing one as well.  We usually order out or go out to eat once a week so I am left with only planning 3 dinners a week.  That’s awesome in my world as I have enough to plan daily.

The second was to try and think ahead and make “multi-meal” plans.  You can see how I do it on my Facebook page here:  Kitchen Tips

Homemade Bread

done IMG_4116 (2)

The boy and his classmates were asked to provide a loaf of bread to our local Golden Age Center (seniors center).  The school provided all of the ingredients and instructions which was enough for 2 loaves (one to donate and one for our family).  I let the kids make it together.

It was a simple recipe, a bit different from our regular recipe, but it was very good.  You can see how we made the bread on my facebook page here:  Homemade Bread

3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies

IMG_3948 (2) IMG_3947 (2)

Ok….it was 4 ingredients for half the batch as I added chocolate chips to some.

1 cup of peanut butter

1 cup of sugar

1 egg

mix all until smooth, add chocolate or butterscotch chips if desired, form teaspoon size balls and press with a fork.  Bake at 350 for exactly 12 minutes and you have a delicious cookie.  These are also gluten free!

This recipe is shared from Barefeet in the Kitchen and you can find the recipe on my post here:  Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies

IMG_3940 (2) IMG_3941 (2) IMG_3945 (2)

Chicken Pot Pie

Tonight I made Chicken Pot pies.  I made 2 full size pies and 3 individual pies to freeze for the boy as he LOVES to have them after hockey practice for dinner.

IMG_3913 (2)

I have posted this recipe before here:  Chicken Pot Pie

This is an easy recipe and perfect for using up that leftover chicken!

Here are a few pictures from my batches today.  We enjoyed one full pie for dinner and the others are in the freezer for another time!

IMG_3899 (2) IMG_3900 (2) IMG_3901 (2) IMG_3906 (2)IMG_3909 (2) IMG_3910 (2) IMG_3911 (2) IMG_3914 (2) IMG_3915 (2) IMG_3917 (2) IMG_3918 (2) IMG_3919 (2)

Recipe here:  Chicken Pot Pie

French Onion Soup

IMG_3859 (2) 324792_2180130707812_977675445_o (2)

Onions are in season and this is a great recipe to use those red onions!

We love French Onion Soup and this recipe is perfect to eat for dinner one night and there is plenty left over to freeze for another dinner.

IMG_1714 (2) IMG_1716 (2)

Cut your onions and get all in the stockpot to simmer

IMG_3866 (2) IMG_3859 (2)

After it simmers down it looks like the above picture.  We baked some of ours and microwaved the other which you can see by the one with browned cheese and the other one with melted cheese.  I prefer it browned while the boy likes it melted.

French Onion Soup

6 Red onions peeled and sliced

3 Tbsp Olive Oil

3 Tbsp butter

2 large cloves of garlic minced

¼ tsp kosher salt

1 tsp white sugar

½ cup of white wine (I use whatever I have on hand)

8 cups of beef stock (try to get a very good flavored one such as Swanson)

Approx. ¼ tsp black pepper

2 fresh bay leaves

2 tsp. thyme or throw a fresh sprig in

Provolone cheese

Crustini bread or croutons

In a dutch oven or heavy bottomed stock pot heat the onions and the 3 Tbsp of olive oil until the onions are soft (about 10 – 15 minutes). Add the butter and caramelize the onions (they should be a nice golden brown do not burn). Add the garlic, salt and sugar and stir until incorporated. Pour in the wine and scrape the bottom and sides to get all the nice bits. Pour in the beef stock, pepper, bay leaves and thyme and simmer on low for approximately 35 minutes.

Remove and place in a bowl (or crock if you are going to bake cheese). Toss in the crustini or croutons and top with provolone cheese. Place under the broiler if using a crock until the cheese starts to brown. Or you can microwave the bowl until the cheese is melted.