Friday, February 15, 2013

Chicken and Dumpling Casserole

This is the recipe I used. Mine didn't brown as nicely.
Well, I did it. I tried a recipe I'd seen a while back but just hadn't gotten around to trying yet. I grew up on my mother's chicken potpie, which is very similar to chicken and dumplings down south except that the chicken is kept separate from the rolled and cut dumplings in the broth. Mom's was downright the best there was and she never made just a little. Her recipe called for SEVEN cups of flour. Yeah - really. And, there were only three of us.

Needless to say, for me it was a daunting task to even consider making her recipe because she'd never made  small batches and I wasn't that good at making the dough. So, she would periodically make drop dumplings in her later years, which she liked almost as much, but I wasn't so thrilled with.

Then I discovered I could make potpie (our kind) using flour tortillas. After all, aren't tortillas just flour dough already rolled and flat? All I had to do was cut them into strips and drop them into the broth to cook. Mom loved it and told everyone they should try it themselves.

So, Mom's gone now and I do once in a while make up a batch of tortilla potpie for myself. My daughter's not quite so fond of the tortilla kind, so I only make enough for me. But, I saw this recipe a while back and kept it in the back of my mind as a potential option for the future. It is called Chicken and Dumpling Casserole.

The original recipe I saw required Bisquick, something I never have on hand. But, just yesterday I found a recipe that called for self-rising flour instead of Bisquick. I knew I had to try it because I had self-rising flour on hand that was never being used except as a gravy thickener. The only thing I didn't have was cream of chicken soup. I did have cream of celery, though. I decided the time had come.

Tonight, I made Chicken and Dumpling Casserole and I am so glad I did. I wish Mom were here because I just know she'd like it, too. As with the pork chops yesterday, I was a little heavy handed with the spice. I used just a bit too much poultry seasoning, but I can cut back the next time. And, I might put a little more liquid in next time, too. But, those two things aside, I was very happy with the results. 

One of the reasons I don't like drop dumplings is because of the dry dumpling in the center. I like the rolled dumplings because they absorb the broth all the way through. Well, this recipe pretty much takes care of that problem. It works much like the Bisquick Impossible Pies where the batter cooks in the broth and puffs up creating a "dough"; in this case, the "dumplings". Because it is poured in as a thick batter, it doesn't really have a substantial thickness to it that allows it to stay dry as it cooks, so it creates a very moist dumpling-like biscuit topping to the base of chicken and chicken broth. 

The recipe calls for ready-made stock, but since I was cooking chicken just for this recipe, I used the stock that I created with that. And, I used that cream of celery soup knowing that there was plenty of chicken flavor in the broth and in the granulated chicken stock it also listed in the ingredients. I really don't think there was much of a difference between the two soups at all that I could claim to recognize. The only thing is that you really don't need to put any salt on the chicken because there's plenty of salt in the stock, in the butter (I don't have unsalted butter) and in the soup. You can always add some if you want when you eat it.

The only thing missing was cranberry sauce - an accompaniment I have always loved with chicken potpie or turkey dinner. I didn't even have any apple sauce, which is an acceptable alternative for me. Quite frankly, there are worse things to be missing. Like dinner.


  1. So glad you liked the dish! It's a favorite at our house!

    1. I plan to make this again when I have the soups on hand. I'll use a lighter hand on the salt and poultry seasoning and maybe add a tad more broth, but I totally enjoyed it and look forward to a second round. Just an aside - it drove our cats plum wild! They could smell all that tantalizing chicken and made it nearly impossible for them to not beg!