This amazing meal is supposed to be cooked in a (drum roll) Dutch Oven!
Before I begin, I have to say that it came out perfectly. So perfect that I'm pretty darn sure mine looked even better than the pic in my little magazine. Take that Martha! That said, I got caught up in letting my daughter pick out which dumpling she wanted, and I spooned out the first dumpling before I took a picture. Curses! So, here is my almost better than Martha picture. You'll note the dumpling gap... something Martha never would have done.
Now we can get started. Here is what you will need:
Chicken with Cornmeal Dumplings
serves 6, from "Everyday Food"
3 T. unsalted butter
1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
(I only had a little over a pound, and it was fine)
sea salt and ground pepper
1/2 bunch scallions
(this is my onion week... what are scallions? they are green onions)
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced medium
celery stalks... the recipe called for 2. I had very slender ones so used 6 or 7.
2 medium carrots, diced medium
1 shy teaspoon ground, dried thyme
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 bottles pilsner (12 oz) or another light or medium lager
1 can (28 oz.) whole peeled tomatoes
recipe called for 1-2 T. red-wine vinegar... I didn't have any so didn't use.
1 recipe Cornmeal Dumpling Dough (to follow)
1) In Dutch Oven (or heavy pot with tight fitting lid -- you don't have to use a Ducth Oven) melt 1 T. butter over med. high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper, add to pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned on all sides, ~ 5 mins.
2) With slotted spoon, transfer chicken to a small bowl.
3) Add 2 T. butter, scallions, bell pepper, celery and carrots to pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until scallions and celery are tender, ~ 4mins.
4) Stir in thyme and flour and season with salt and pepper. Cook 1 minute.
Return chicken to pot and whisk in beer.
With your hands, roughly tear tomatoes and add to pot along with juices.
Bring to a rapid simmer and cook, uncovered, 30 minutes (While simmering, make your dumpling dough. Recipe below). Season to taste with vinegar.
5) Reduce heat to a simmer and drop dumpling dough by rounded tablespoons on top of stew. Cover and simmer until dumplings are cooked through, about 7 - 10 mins.
In a medium bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup all purpose flour, 1/3 cup fine yellow cornmeal, 1.5 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt. Using your fingers, work in 1 T. unsalted butter until small crumbs form. Stir in 1/2 cup buttermilk.