"I cannot live without books: but fewer will suffice where amusement, and not use, is the only future object." -- Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Leftover Chicken & Dumplings and Cuchulainn Sheehan Mocktail

Bad Start Ends with a Good Recipe, Mocktail and More

My internet is so SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW, I have to have three projects in the works, so I can use the downtime for another project while I wait for internet access or a webpage to load. And that is just one of my technology problems.
So, I get frustrated.

I am working on two cookbooks. One is an enlarged version of Recipes from the Kitchen of a Frugal Non-Cook and the other is about mock cocktails.

One thing I have learned about cocktails is you can add a shot of liquor to just about anything and call it a cocktail.

I wanted to try a recipe called “Easy Chicken and Dumplings” because I love recipes that have “easy” in the title.

But, it calls for “cooked chicken”, so now I have to cook two dishes.

I need to cook chicken, so I can dice it for the recipe. So, how do you cook chicken?

Simple question, try an internet search and you end up with things like “Margarita Chicken”, not what I wanted to see.

So, I guessed. I added about 1 inch of water to a pan. I put my chicken legs in the pan on the electric stovetop and cooked them on medium high (low boil) for 20+ minutes. It worked, I got cooked chicken. Plus, some chicken stock.

Try pouring hot chicken stock into a jar; it can get messy if you aren’t careful. I firmly believe the kitchen is a dangerous place.

I put the chicken in the frig to cool, to dice later for the recipe. Now, I have lots of dirty dishes and I haven’t even started on the recipe.

This is perfect example of why I hate to cook and why I admire good cooks like my mom, who made it all look so easy. After doing five sinkfuls of dishes over the last three days, I could not help but appreciate my mom more. Plus, I am daydreaming about going out to eat. No dirty dishes in my daydreams.

Anyway, the dishes are washed and chicken has cooled.

After pulling the meat off the bones, I diced up a small bowl of chicken, more than the recipe called for.

While I made a few adjustments to the recipe, I wondered, “How do you know when dumplings are done?”

I don’t know. I was too tired to research it. All I could remember about dumplings was I liked them. I think they came out ok. They were hmmm, how to describe dumplings? Cooked dough in a chicken sauce. Not doughy, but dough-like, a bit like a biscuit.

The dish survived and so did I.

Also, I made a Mocktail I created and named “Cuchulainn Sheehan.” It turned out nicely -- refreshing, light and a bit tart.

At the end of the day, the computer technician came to provide me with an ethernet cable, so I could access the internet directly with the hope it would speed things up a bit.

So, a day that started badly ended successfully.

Now, I will call this recipe “Leftover Chicken and Dumplings”, so I will only use it when I have leftover cooked chicken.

Leftover Chicken and Dumplings (In Two Steps)

Step One

Chicken Mixture

2 cups cooked chicken, diced
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons water
1 cup chicken broth (or 1/2 chicken bullion and 1 cup water)

Add flour to pan. Add water.
Stir to make smooth. Add more water if necessary.
Add broth. Stir.
Cook at medium heat until mixture thickens.
Add chicken.
Season to taste.

Step Two


1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon Baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
2 tablespoons milk

In a bowl, add flour, baking powder, salt and garlic powder.
Stir to mix.
Add milk.
Stir to form dough. Add more milk if necessary.
Form small mounds of dough with a tablespoon and drop into chicken mixture.
Cover pan. Reduce heat.
Cook on simmer 15 minutes.

Note: this post was done while using the ethernet cable and there were no drops in service!!!

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