On Wednesday evening, my friend Morley came over for an evening of wine, soup, Obama, and studying. It was a good night. I had a bunch of bread-ends in the freezer that needed to be used up, so I decided to make chicken dumpling soup. The basic soup started with the chicken noodle soup recipe I posted not too long ago, but I omitted the noodles in lieu of dumplings. Morley had brought some lovely farm share leeks so I chopped those up and added them to the stock, which added a lovely, subtle new dimension. I’d never made dumplings before so I kind of winged it but it turned out great! The dumplings were a perfect, slightly sweet, spiced foil for the salty soup, and they stayed together wonderfully (much to my surprise). I used this recipe as a starting point for the dumplings, but ended up changing it pretty heavily. Here’s how I did it.
Chicken Dumpling Soup
One batch of my chicken noodle soup, omitting the noodles and adding one chopped leek at the same time you add the onions, celery, and garlic.
6 cups bread crumbs (I used the ends of a few loaves of Orowheat whole wheat bread, pulverized in the blender)
1 cup soy milk (or real milk, or cream — I used soy so Ed could eat them)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1 whole egg + the yolk of another egg
Olive oil for frying (a couple tablespoons)
- Make chicken soup per the other recipe.
- While the soup is boiling, whisk together bread crumbs, salt, nutmeg, thyme, turmeric, nutritional yeast, and pepper.
- Add soymilk and mix well. Allow to soak in for a few minutes.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg and egg yolk well. Add to the breadcrumb mixture and mix well. Roll into 1 1/4 inch balls and place on parchment paper. They’ll be a little mushy but don’t worry about it.
- Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil and heat it.
- Place evenly spaced dumplings in frying pan, minding the fact that it might spatter. Don’t place the dumplings too close to each other or they’ll be difficult to turn.
- When dumplings are dark golden brown on one side, turn them to another side and cook till it’s dark golden brown too. Repeat as many times as necessary until all sides are golden brown and crispy.
- Keep the dumplings separate from the soup. Add them to each bowl just prior to serving. They stay together fairly well in the soup, but not much longer than the time it takes to eat it. To reheat dumplings (as serving as leftovers), microwave them for 30 seconds before adding them to hot soup.