Sunday, 4 November 2012

Baby, it’s finally cold outside!

There is an anonymous quote that says: "Bad weather always looks worse through a window." And yes, I totally agree.

The cold weather is finally upon us after a late start to a wonderfully warm and elongated summer. My poor grass is finally getting the water it craves and my garden is once again turning green and not a nice shade of brown. I welcome this cooler weather and I have to say that this is my favourite time of year and I love pulling out my sweaters and boots for walks in falling leaves and broody skies.

I do not get much snow where I live – if at all – and so when it rains or gets chilly, I turn to making stews, soups and hearty comfort food. My first stew of the season was a chicken stew that I made the other night and it is from a recipe my mum gave me. It’s a quick one and easy to make if you come home from work and do not know what to do with some leftover chicken, or you purchased an already roasted one from the market. This recipe is so simple; you will end up making it a lot through the winter.
And leftovers are even better the next day.

I usually serve this with rustic bread or sometimes garlic bread. If I make dumplings, I don’t do the bread as you do not want to have a carb overload. It’s great for lunches the next day and freezes well. Enjoy!

Here is what you will need:

1 whole roasted chicken, shredded (bones disposed of)
4 – 5 already cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, shredded
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped (or to taste; I sometimes add a half a bulb)
1 10 ounce package of mixed veggies
1 tsp. dried basil
½ tsp. ground black pepper
1 14 oz. can of chicken stock or bouillon made according to package directions (equalling water amount below)
3 – 4 cups water
¼ cup of flour
1 cup of milk
Dumplings (optional):
2 cups of flour
2 tsp. baking soda
¼ cup of milk
  1. Put in broth, veggies, onion, water, pepper and basil into a large pot. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until veggies are firm, but not frozen.

  2. Combine flour and milk.

  3. Put in chicken and flour mixture. Bring to a boil again for about 5 minutes or until thickened. Serve with rustic bread.

  4. Reduce heat to low if adding dumplings. Mix your flour, baking soda and milk until combined. Drop in tablespoon fulls of mixtures around pot. Cover with lid and simmer for 10 minutes. DO NOT lift the lid during this time. Serve hot.
Onions and basil in.

Mixed veggies, water and stock.

Milk and flour mixutre and chicken in.

Dumplings dropped in and ready to cook.

The finished maserpiece!

Ready to eat!