When you are depressed. When you are unhappy. When you are lonely. When you need a hug. When you need comfort what do you go for. What do you need to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside? There are so many ‘comfort’ foods out there it is some times hard to choose. Last night I wasn’t depressed, I wasn’t unhappy, I wasn’t lonely, and I can always use a hug. Nonetheless, it was a night for one of our favorite comfort foods.

    Chicken and Dumplings

I was going thru’ my Taste of the South magazines and ran across an article on The Dumpling Diva, Bea Farmer, in Tennessee. She is ‘the best dumpling-maker in Tennessee.” I decided I had to try her recipe and I am so glad I did. My dumplings were okay, but they were never great. Hers, on the other hand, are…. great that is. The difference is that she mixes the dough with shortening and chicken broth. Now some of you may already make great dumplings, if so, then you won’t need this recipe, but if you are like me……read on. the basic is to boil one 4 to 5 lb fryer with butter and salt to taste in just enough water to cover the chicken. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce to simmer and cook 1.5 to 2 hours.

    The Diva’s Dumplings
      4 cups AP flour
      2 tsp salt
      3/4 cup vegetable shortening
      Gd pepper to taste.

In a large bowl combine flour and 2 tsp salt. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mix resembles coarse cornmeal. Add just enough chicken broth to make a stiff dough. (You should have enough broth from cooking the chicken to hold back about 1.5 cups to use in the dough. If you don’t need all of it, just put it back into the pot.) Don’t mix too long or dough will become tough. Bring broth to a boil. Roll out dough on floured surface to about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into strips and drop into broth. Reduce to simmer and cook 15 to 20 minutes. Season with pepper. Slowly add chicken and continue to cook until chicken is heated through. Eat and savor slowly. Feel the hug??

Pictures removed because The General said they didn’t really look very appetizing.