Last night was my first City Grit dinner on the road. Some new friends – Hannah Horne, WIS (Columbia’s NBC affiliate) lead news anchor, and Emile DeFelice, owner of Caw Caw Creek Farm, attended the dinner, as well as some of my high school friends. My parents also came which made it a very special evening.
The consensus among those who sat at the table with my parents was that I should bring my Dad “on the road” with me because he is HILARIOUS! Apparently, he kept trying to get people to leave and go to Taco Bell…which he thinks is so funny. Obviously, so did everyone else. He also kept asking when was the “Chicken and Dumplings” course was coming.
I think he thought he was making a joke because he thinks that Chicken & Dumplings is too “low brow” for the dinner I was serving. Little does he know, that it was actually one of the courses on the menu at the larger Parlez Vous Francais, Y’all dinners we hosted in NYC earlier this month. This is actually the first dish I created when I started working on the menu. It marries Chicken with 40 cloves of garlic, one of the most popular dishes among French home cooks, with a Southern staple, Chicken and Dumplings.
Since I’m not serving this dish on the road, I thought I’d share the recipe. I love this dish so much that I may never make my standard chicken and dumplings recipe again.
- 2 tablespoon canola oil
- 4 chicken breasts, bone in, skin on (about 3-4 pounds)
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- 2 celery stalks
- 2 cups white wine
- 2 sprigs of rosemary
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- 4 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley
- 40 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- 3 cups chicken stock, divided
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons shortening
- 3/4 cups buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a 5 quart dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat.
- Pat the chicken breasts dry with a paper towel and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper.
- Place the chicken breasts, skin side down, in the hot oil. Cook until skin is crispy, about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the chicken to a plate and add onions and celery to hot oil. Cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Add the wine and bring to a boil for 4-5 minutes, scraping the bottom and sides of the pan to release those yummy brown bits.
- Bundle the thyme, rosemary, and parsley and add to liquid. Scatter half of the garlic cloves in the bottom of the pan.
- Nestle the chicken into the liquid and top with the remaining cloves.
- Roast uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until juices run clear when chicken is cut.
- Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles course meal.
- Add buttermilk, stirring with a fork until moist.
- Turn dough out onto a flour surface and knead lightly out onto a flour surface and knead lightly four or fine times.
- Roll out into a 1/4 inch thick square
- Using a sharp knife, cut into strips, approximately one inch wide.
- Bring remaining chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan. Drop pastry 8-10 pieces into boiling stock and cook for 5-6 minutes. Transfer to cooked pastry to dutch oven and continue working in batches.
Notes: I’m not usually a proponent of shortening. But it’s really the only way to make the perfect dumplings. You can use lard if you prefer. If the dish seems to be too thick, use the leftover stock to thin out the mixture.
What you’ll need: A 5 quart dutch oven, medium saucepan.
What you want to know: You don’t want to know.