Chicken and Chive Dumpling Soup

This soup originated as a recipe that saw in a Shape magazine. Over the years I’ve made changes to it in order to add more flavor. Here is my version of this soup. It has become one of my favorite soups. There is nothing like enjoying a bowl of this soup when the weather is cold outside. This is a meal in itself.

Ingredients

  • 2 t olive or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 2 clv garlic, minced
  • 1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 T fresh chopped thyme (or 1t dried thyme)
  • 1/4 t ground black pepper
  • 1 t chopped fresh sage (or 1/4 t dried sage)
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 2 T chopped fresh parsley

Dumplings

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 T unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup milk (lowfat/nonfat/full fat – whatever you have)
  • 2 T chopped fresh chives
  • tiny pinch of salt

Directions

Heat oil in a large stock pot (with a tight-fitting lid) over medium-high heat. Add chicken and a couple of pinches of salt. Brown the chicken for about 5 minutes and then remove from the pan.
Add onion, bell pepper, carrots, and a pinch of salt and pepper and saute 2 minutes (add a little oil here if needed). Add the garlic and sautee for about 30 seconds. Add chicken back in along with bay leaves, thyme, pepper, and sage and stir. Add chicken broth (scraping the bottom of the pan) and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Work in butter with a fork until mixture is crumbly (I use my hand because I feel that it does the job better). Add milk and stir with a fork until mixture comes together. Fold in chives.

Add peas to simmering liquid in pot and return to a simmer. Taste broth and add salt and/or pepper here if you think it needs it.

Using a large spoon, drop 8 ball-shaped dumplings (slightly bigger than golf balls) into liquid. Cover and simmer 8 to 10 minutes (without lifting lid), until dumplings are tender and cooked through (they’ll be firm to the touch).

Remove from heat and discard bay leaves. Ladle soup and dumplings into bowls and sprinkle with fresh parsley.

Closing notes:

– This is the type of recipe where you can use what you have on hand. You can use celery, zucchini…whatever. The onion and carrot are important to the soup, but the other veggies can be varied as needed.

– Last time I made this soup I didn’t have chives for the dumplings. So I used parsley instead. They were still really good.  I also didn’t have peas but it still tasted wonderful.

– The original dumpling recipe didn’t call for salt but I feel that it needs that little pinch to add flavor.

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