Okay, I know I keep saying that this or that is my all time favorite food, but this is IT!! Years ago when I came home for the weekend from college, this dish was what I wanted more than anything. Now, if I’m going to be home around my birthday…, yep Chicken and Dumplings will be on the stove when I get there. If I’m in a bad way and need a fix, Cracker Barrel will do in a pinch. Their’s are close to my Momma’s. Not quite, but close. There is nothing worse to me than bad chicken and dumplings, so I’m scared to order them just about anywhere else. Bite into doughy, tasteless, or tough ones. Dinner’s over and I’m pissed. But, when they’re good, and there’s a side of turnip or collard greens and there is lots of black pepper to top it off, and a big glass of sweet tea with lots of ice, well… now we’re talking! Put some on the top of your head and watch your tongue beat your brain to death just to get to it. I give my Momma all the credit for making my favorite. She doesn’t need or use a written recipe, but told me about this recipe that she found in my handy Blue Eye Baptist Church cookbook from 1995. My Great-Aunt Bernice’s shared this among many others and so we have a written record of award winning chicken an dumplings. So there you go. Thanks Bernice!
1 whole chicken, cooked until tender and deboned. Reserve stock.
1 cup of PLAIN flour
2 Tablespoons Crisco shortening
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoons baking powder
water, enough to make dough stiff ( don’t you just love these kind of measurements!)
Mix all ingredients( add water a little bit at a time) until dough is stiff. Don’t over work or they’ll be tough. Roll dough very thin, then cut into strips in a criss -cross . You’ll end up with diamond-shaped pieces of dough.
Bring reserved chicken broth to a rolling boil. Drop dough diamonds in one at a time. Simmer until cooked through, about 30 minutes. Stir just enough to incorporate the dumplings, but not so much to break apart. Fold in reserved chicken pieces.