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The Hirshon Chicken and Dumplings

The Hirshon Chicken and Dumplings


Units Scale
  • Roasted Chicken:
  • 1 (3-pound) whole chicken
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 lemon, halved and juiced; halves reserved
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped herbs, such as thyme, parsley and rosemary
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 4 garlic cloves, smashed
  • Fresh whole herbs, such as rosemary, thyme and parsley sprigs
  • ***
  • 1 slice Niman Ranch Ham Steak, diced
  • 12 tablespoons schmaltz (rendered chicken fat)
  • 1 package sliced button mushrooms
  • Peanut oil
  • Cream Sherry (at least 1/3 cup, minimum)
  • ***
  • Chicken Stock:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 carrots, cut in large chunks
  • 2 celery stalks, cut in large chunks
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 1 garlic bulb, halved
  • Reserved chicken bones
  • Cold water + 1 carton low-sodium chicken broth
  • Several branches fresh parsley
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ***
  • Dumplings:
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 to 1 cup buttermilk
  • ***
  • Supreme Sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1 finely diced red pepper
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon minced rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons minced thyme
  • 4 tablespoons minced celery leaves
  • 1 tablespoon minced dill
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 6 cups chicken stock


  1. Roasted Chicken:
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove the neck and giblets from the cavity of the chicken and discard. Rinse the chicken under cold water, inside and out. Pat dry thoroughly with paper towels. Season the body and cavity of the chicken generously with salt and pepper.
  3. In a small bowl, mash together the butter, lemon juice, and chopped herbs. Rub the herbed butter all over the chicken, as well as under the skin. Put ½ lemon, ½ onion, garlic, and whole herbs inside the chicken cavity, for added flavor. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine.
  4. Place the chicken, breast side up, in a roasting pan fitted with a rack. Roast for 1 hour until the meat is no longer pink. When cool enough to handle, shred the breast meat and drumstick meat, discarding the skin and set aside. Reserve the remaining carcass for chicken stock.
  5. In a Dutch oven, melt schmaltz over medium heat and add ham. Fry until lightly browned, remove meat. Add peanut oil (good amount) and add mushrooms, scraping bottom of pan. Fry until soft and golden, remove. Add chicken shreds, then sherry, stir until sherry is evaporated, remove chicken and any remaining pan juices to ham and mushrooms, reserve.
  6. Chicken Stock:
  7. To prepare the stock, coat a large stockpot with olive oil and place over medium heat. Add the vegetables and saute for 3 minutes. Add the reserved chicken bones, water, and herbs; simmer for 1 hour. Strain the stock to remove the solids and set aside.
  8. Dumplings:
  9. To prepare the dumplings: sift dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs and milk together; pour the liquid in the dry ingredients and gently fold. Mix just until the dough comes together, the batter should be thick and cake-like.
  10. Supreme Sauce:
  11. To prepare Supreme Sauce: In a Dutch oven, melt butter and heat oil over medium heat. Add carrot, celery, garlic, and bay leaves. Sauté until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Add chicken mixture and chopped herbs, then stir in the 1 tablespoon flour and cook 1 minute.
  12. Add ¼ cup flour and continue to stir and cook for 2 minutes to cook the flour and remove the starchy taste. Slowly pour in the chicken stock, 1 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition.
  13. Let sauce simmer until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 15 minutes. In the last 5 minutes add the frozen peas.
  14. Using 2 spoons, carefully drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the dumpling batter into the hot mixture. The dumplings should cover the top of the sauce, but should not be touching or crowded. Let the dumplings poach for 10 to 15 minutes until they are firm and puffy. Season with freshly cracked black pepper and garnish with chopped parsley, celery leaves and dill before serving.