Archive for the 'William' Category

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Butter and Herb Chicken Dumplings

Have you ever had a recipe that was supposed to be easy but caused you no end of doubt and worry? I just had that experience with this recipe and it was terrifying. As I was cooking I kept asking, “Are these supposed to look like this?” “Is this dough too thin?” “Isn’t this supposed to be thicker?” “Does that look mixed to you?”

The recipe looked easy, simple, and quick–and it was–but, boy, was I anxious about how these would turn out. I think it’s because I expected something a bit more involved and was caught off guard when the work was finished in less than five minutes.

Dumplings in chicken soup.
In the end, they tasted great and were one of the easiest meals I have made. Not all my dumplings were picture-perfect, but they sure tasted great.

Why did it cause me problems? Well, click through to find out.

I was flying blind. Not only had I never made dumplings before, but I could also not remember ever having them before. I had no idea how they were supposed to cook or what they were supposed to look like. I was still tired and a bit under the weather, so I skipped my usual research for new recipes. I just chose the recipe from How to Cook Everything that was next to the chicken soup.

They were fine, it turns out I can follow instructions.

Chicken dumplings in soup.
Butter and Herb Chicken Dumplings

6 cups chicken stock
4 tablespoons butter (half a stick) (softened)
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour
1/3 fresh parsley
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper


Bring the 6 cups chicken stock to a simmer.
In a mixing bowl, mash the butter with a fork until soft and creamy. Add the eggs and mix until combined (it’s fine if it doesn’t get completely incorporated).
Add the rest of the ingredients (salt and pepper to your liking). Add any other herbs you like (I added about 1/2 teaspoon of Herbs en Provence). The dough will still be creamy, don’t worry, it’s fine.
Measure out about teaspoon sized amounts and, using another spoon or your fingers, scoop it out into the simmering broth. Try to keep the dough together or you will end up with some oddly shaped dumplings, as I did.
Simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with chicken soup.

Easy Chicken Stock

A few days ago I mentioned that I made a chicken soup. I highly reccomend making your own stock for this. It’s neither hard nor particularly difficult to make your own stock. And because I was a bit under the weather when I made this particular version, I took extra pains to make sure it was easy.

Finished Chicken Stock

Finished Chicken Stock

Once you make your own, you’ll realize that it is much better than any of the dozen or so of the brands offered at the supermarket. Sure, one or two may be serviceable, but making it yourself is truly stunning.

Interested in making the simplest chicken stock? Click through to find out how.

Continue reading ‘Easy Chicken Stock’

Hot Toddy, a cure

Whether you are trying to chase off the cold or a cold, a Hot Toddy will solve your problems. It is combination of lemons, hot liquid and alcohol commonly used as a sore throat/cold remedy. Naturally, I used it in conjunction with my chicken soup as part of my cold cure.

A hot toddy in the making.

A hot toddy in the making.

A couple of these and you will be set for a night of sleep. Check after the jump for the recipe and more pics.

Continue reading ‘Hot Toddy, a cure’

Potato Chips

While I had all the oil and potatoes available, I decided to make one more thing with it. This one was pretty obvious, really. Cut your potatoes into thin disks, fry them, and ta-da…

Potato Chips

Potato Chips

Apart from the shape, there is really only one difference between these and the french fries: Fry them once at the high temperature and not twice. Like most fried food, these are best fresh. I can’t really tell you how they are the next day as there are typically none left. 

Several months ago I posted about making potato chips in the microwave. You can quickly get your snack on with that method, but it doesn’t quite match the fresh-out-of-the-fryer taste. The microwave chips had some benifits: arguably a bit crunchier, harder to burn the chip (and yourself), and less mess. If you are looking to make chips for one or two, use your microwave. If you want chips for 5 or more, deep frying them is the way to go.

I might as well describe the process in detail for those who like specifics (me!), so click through…

Continue reading ‘Potato Chips’

M&M Easter Eggs!

A few weeks ago I posted that I came across the Peanut M&M Bunny Mix and, after devouring a bag, I wondered if M&M’s made any different kinds of Easter themed mixes. I should have never doubted them, in another grocery store this weekend, I came across two more: regular M&M’s Bunny Mix, and Easter Eggs!

M&M Easter Speck-tackular Eggs

M&M Easter Speck-tackular Eggs

It’s pretty cute that they print sheep, rabbits, and ducks on the regular ones, but the Easter Eggs blow my mind on many levels. I’m going to stock up on the Easter Eggs while they are in season because they will be sorely missed until next Easter. Click though for a detailed analysis of the awesomeness hidden in the M&M Easter Eggs.

Continue reading ‘M&M Easter Eggs!’

French Fries

Serving yesterday’s burgers on an empty plate just wouldn’t be right. It didn’t take much thought to decide what side dish best accompanies burgers. Obviously, I had to make French fries.

Burger and fries.

Burger and fries.

Fresh French fries are everything that frozen, fast food fries are not: crispy on the outside, light and fluffy on the inside, and a true potato flavor. Contrary to what many people think, French fries are neither difficult nor particularly messy to make. A pot, oil, potatoes, and salt are all you really need. Once it is set up, large batches can quickly be made–which is a good thing, as these are fairly addicting. Not that the basic recipe needs any changing, but I borrowed a trick from Cooks Illustrated to get these extra crispy.

A big plate of fries.

A big plate of fries.

Click through for the recipe and tips on frying.

Continue reading ‘French Fries’

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