Thursday, March 1, 2012

Salsa Verde Chicken and Dumplings

I don't know about you, but the weather here has been very spiratic, to say the least.  We've seen 80 degree weather at the beginning of the week then been in the 30's by the end of the week.  Not only is this weather an open invitation for colds, coughs and all that other fun stuff but it's also a pain trying to get a meal plan together.  Our meals plans have been as extreme as grilling burgers outside one night and cuddled up in cozy clothes eating soup, stew or chili the next night.  I guess a perk to this weather is if you really have a craving for summer inspired food and a cozy, comfort food all at the same time you can plan your menu accordingly.

I came across this recipe on Pink Parsley last year.  From the moment I saw it I knew this was a must to make.  I have made it a few times and we have absolutely loved it, but I haven't shared it with you (don't me mad!) until now because I just couldn't get any pictures that I just loved.  Well, I made it again during one of our many cold spells and finally got some pictures I was pleased with.  So without further or due, here is a delicious meal perfect for any day of the week the fuses together two delicious foods.
Chicken and dumplings are quickly becoming a staple in our meal plans.  Mexican food, um, yes please!  Combining the comforts of chicken and dumplings and the flavors inspired by Mexican food, simply brilliant.  That's exactly what has been done here and let me tell you, it's wonderful spin on a classic.  This meal brings it all to the table, the creamy soup base that is so familiar to the classic chicken and dumplings.  Then things are lived up and the flavors are truly amped up with the addition of the spicy salsa verde and the bright earthiness from the cilantro.  This truly becomes a one pot meal with the addition of vegetables and protein.

This meal is a crowd pleaser and the flavors can be adjusted to suite any taste.  This meal is quick enough for a weeknight but just as perfect for one of those lazy weekend days when you want a satisfying meal but you don't want to be in the kitchen for hours and hours.   

Salsa Verde Chicken and Dumplings

1/2 Stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/2 Large onion, diced
2 Cloves garlic, minced
1/2 Cup + 2 Tbsp all-purpouse flour
1 Can (14 ounces) low-sodium chicken broth
2 Cups (16 ounces) salsa verde, homemade or store bought
1 (5ounce) can evaporated milk
1 Cup corn kernels
1 Rotisserie chicken, remove skin and debone meat (approximately 6 cups)
1/3 Cup chopped cilantro
2 Scallions, minced
Kosher salt and black pepper

For the dumplings-
1 Cup milk
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 1/2 Cups all-purpose flour
1/2 Cup cornmeal
1 Tbsp baking powder
3/4 Tsp salt
1/4 Cup thinly sliced scallion greens
1/4 Cup chopped cilantro


Place butter in a medium, heatproof skillet.  Place skillet over medium heat and allow the butter to melt.  Once the butter has melted, add onions and cook until softened and translucent, about 5-8 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook an additional 1-2 minutes.  Add the flour and whisk to make a paste.  In a medium bowl combine the chicken broth, salsa verde, and evaporated milk.  Whisk to combine then add to the onion garlic mixture and whisk to combine.  Whisk vigorously at first, to ensure there is no clumping, once the ingredients are well mixed allow the sauce to simmer and thicken, stirring occassionally.
Once the sauce has thickened add corn, chicken, and herbs and stir to combine. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Keep ingredients over medium heat until heated through.  Remove from heat and cover to keep warm. 

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

To make the dumplings-
Place milk and butter in a small saucepan and heat until the mixture is steaming.  In a separate bowl mix the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, scallions and cilantro.  Add the milk to the flour mixture and stir to form a smooth yet firm dough. 
Using a tablespoon, scoop the dough and add to the chicken soup mixture.  Once all the dough is added, place the skillet over medium-hight heat and allow to warm. Once the mixture is heated through, cover and transfer to the pre-heated oven.  Bake until dumplings are thoroughly cooked, about 15-20 minutes.  Serve immediately. 
Recipe source: adapted from One Dish Dinners via Pink Parsley

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