Posts Tagged ‘extras’

Chip Mom’s Kitchen #9: Chicken and Dumplins feat. Chip Nani

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For this episode of Chip Mom’s Kitchen we have a special guest! My very own mommy, known as Mary or “Chip Nani”.

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I keep telling people that’s she’s even cuter/more awesome than me.  Well, there’s your proof! In honor of her visit, we decided to make a Hoodie family favorite:

Chicken and Dumplins

Difficulty level:
Newb          |         Apprentice         |         Journeyman         |         Master

While also on the savory side of life, this version of chicken and dumplings, unlike Taco Soup, requires quite a bit of prep, quite of bit of attention, rue, and scratch made dumplings. This is not for first timers or the faint of heart!

Quest Items:

Chicken Thighs
Olive Oil
The ‘Holy Trinity’ of vegetables (carrots, celery, and onion)
32 oz. of Chicken Stock
White all purpose flour
Cornmeal
Milk
Poultry Seasoning
Curry Powder
Cayanne Pepper
Salt/Black Pepper
Medium Stock pot
Spatula
Tongs

Musical Accompaniment:

Illustrated Guide:

Oh man, you can just look at this pile and know its going to be a good one.

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To start off, get your pot on the stove over medium high heat. In the pot, pour two tablespoons of olive oil. Don’t push your heat over medium high, as olive oil actually burns at lower temperatures than a lot of other cooking oils.

IMG_4785While the oil is heating, sprinkle both sides of your chicken thighs with salt, pepper, and some poultry seasoning.

 

 

 

 

 

Place your chicken skin-side down in the hot oil.  Flip after about 5 minutes to crisp up both sides.  This gets the rich, fatty juices out of the skin, adding wonderful flavor for later.

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IMG_4787As the chicken is browning, get to dicing up your carrots, onions, and celery.  I used about half a bag of carrots, four stalks of celery, and a large onion.

 

 

 

 

 

Once the chicken is golden brown on both sides – not all the way cooked, just crispy looking – use tongs to pull them out of the pot.  Into that same pot, place all of your good veggies into the oil and fat to saute.

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Make sure to keep a close eye on the veggies. Don’t let them burn. You must continue stirring. Be vigilant. Do not allow yourself to become distracted.

IMG_4791Once the veggies are softened and the onions are starting to turn translucent, its time for the rue. A rue, as the linked video in the light blue description tells, is a thickening agent made of equal parts flower and fat. We have a bit over two tablespoons of fat in our pan from the chicken and olive oil, so you need to add two healthy tablespoons of white flower to the pan.  Turn your heat down to low and do so gradually. Plopping it in all at once will cause lumps.

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After all the flour has been smoothly incorporated into the fat, a smooth off-white paste should be in your pan with your veggies. Stir the rue until it starts to brown and smell nutty, this adds extra flavor. Once toasty brown, add your stock: slowly at first, and then gradually increasing the amount. Again, this prevents lumps!

 

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This is when the reserved chicken thighs go back in the pan to finish cooking and make sure all the delicious chicken-y goodness is in that broth! Bring the heat back to medium and let this simmer for about 20 minutes.  Have a glass of wine, a beer, or your favorite soda as the house fills with tantalizing aromas!

 

The finished chicken is taken out of the pot, shredded, and put back into the pot. This is also the best time to customize your seasoning.  I personally added a pinch of curry powder and cayenne pepper for a kick. I would also suggest a dash of your favorite hot sauce.  Don’t forget to salt and pepper to taste!

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And now for – arguably – the most important part of the meal: dumplins.  I have seen dumplings made in a drop cookie style, where the dough is balled and thrown in to puff into massive tribble-like objects.  I have seen long, noodle like strands.  I was convinced by President Hoodie’s family to try it the “old fashioned southern way”.

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This involved mixing 1/2 cup all purpose flour with 1 tablespoon of cornmeal, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning.  After mixing the dry ingredients with a fork, mix in 1/3 cup skim milk.  If the dough is too sticky, gradually had a bit of flour until the dough is easy to handle.

 

IMG_4796Sprinkle the counter with flour and roll the dough out until it is about an eighth of an inch thick.  Don’t worry about that being too skinny, they will puff and stiffen in the pot!

 

 

 

 

 

Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into bit-size rectangles. Toss these delicious noms into the pot.
IMG_4797IMG_4799Cover the pot with a towel and place the lid on top. This captures more of the steam so less moisture is lost from the pot (At least that was our theory. We did it because the directions told us to!)

 

 

 

 

 

After about 10 minutes of steaming, stir the chicken and dumplins.  Pick out a dumplin and test to make sure they are cooked through.  I like mine al dente, where you might like yours softer.

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This recipe made enough to serve three people.  If you’re cooking for yourself there will probably be leftovers. If not, feel free to double up on this Hoodie Approved recipe!

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Enjoy!  And always remember, Mama luvs ya!

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Chip Mom’s Kitchen #8: Taco Soup

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You may not have noticed, but the general geographic area of NORTH AMERICA has been a tit bit nippy lately.

Taco Soup

Difficulty level:
Newb          |         Apprentice         |         Journeyman         |         Master

If you try hard – I mean REALLY hard – you might be able to mess this up……. maybe.

Quest Items:

Lean Ground Beef
Taco Seasoning
Ranch Dressing Dry Mix
Can of Black Beans
Can of Pinto Beans
Can of Dark Red Kidney Beans
Can of Whole Kernel Corn
Can of Diced Tomatoes
Large Pot
Wooden Spoon/Spatula

Optional: Salsa, Sour Cream, Shredded Cheese, Fritos, Tostitos

Musical Accompaniment:

Illustrated Guide:

Yes, seriously, this is all you need:

Get the goods.

Put your pan over medium high heat.  When it is nice and roasty-toasty warm, put your ground meat of choice into the pan and poke, prod, and crumble until fully browned.

While your meat is browning, open your plethora of cans.  Here’s where you have some choices to make!  If you’d like your meal to be more soupy, do not drain any of the cans.  If you like a thicker, chili-like consistancy, drain some or all of your canned beans and veggies.

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Personally, I like to drain and rinse my beans only.  That gets rid of A LOT of excess salt that you really don’t need in the meal as well as making the Taco Soup not-quite-so-soupy.

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Add the undrained cans of diced tomatoes and whole kernel corn. Open up your packages of dry ranch mix and taco seasoning and dump those in too!  Mix until the dry ingredients are incorporated.

 

Stir in the drained and rinsed beans.  Once everything is in the pot, turn the heat down to medium and let simmer for 10 – 15 minutes!

Scoop into a bowl and fancy it up as you like!  I’m a fan of sour cream and shredded cheese.  President Hoodie style involves a heaping pile of Fritos. YOU can make a style all your own!  Let me know how your flavor experiments come out over at the Chip Mom facebook page.

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One last thing:  This is a meal that gets better in the fridge, so enjoy all those leftovers!

As always, Mama loves ya! <3

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