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Cook2 hrs 15 mins
This is my Polish grandma's recipe, taught to her by her mother. She never wrote down recipes, which forced us to spend even more time with her, learning her recipes (no one ever complained about that though), but also had the unfortunate (for you) effect of none of us writing down the recipes either, so most measurements below are estimates. It is a little time-consuming, as everything is made from scratch, but it is good to whip up on a Sunday afternoon in January. You can also not make the dumplings and just serve the broth with other egg noodles.
- 1 (3 lb) broiler-fryer chickens, rinsed well
- 6 cherry tomatoes (about a handful)
- 3 stalks celery, leaves attached
- 2 carrots, peeled
- 1 large onion, quartered
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 1⁄2 teaspoon celery salt
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1⁄2 teaspoon seasoning salt
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3⁄4 cup milk
- Place chicken in a large Dutch oven, cutting into pieces to fit if necessary. Cover completely with water.
- Add tomatoes, celery, carrots, onion, peppercorns, and celery salt. You may add other herbs and spices as you see fit.
- Place Dutch oven over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 2 hours.
- Meanwhile, to make the dumplings, mix together flour, baking soda, and seasoned salt in a mixing bowl.
- Cut butter into flour mixture using two knives or a pastry blender.
- Add milk 1 tablespoons at a time until a dough forms.
- Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead lightly just until smooth.
- Roll dough to a thickness of 1/8" using a floured rolling pin. If dough starts sticking, dust dough with more flour. Don't be bashful about adding flour here. It will be used to thicken the broth later.
- Cut rolled dough into strips approximately 1/2" wide. Stack a few strips on top of each other and cut crosswise into 3/4" lengths. Place dumplings in a floured dish, adding a dusting of flour after each new layer is added to the dish. Place dish, covered, in refrigerator until broth is ready.
- To finish the broth, remove the chicken and vegetables from the pot. Discard the vegetables*. Pour the remaining broth through a fine strainer into another pot or a large bowl. Return broth to the Dutch oven.
- Return Dutch oven to the stove. Bring broth to a boil.
- Add dumplings, with a large portion of the flour in the dish, to the broth. Return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, pull the meat from half the chicken and shred it. Cut other half of chicken into pieces. The pieces can either be brushed with BBQ sauce to serve with the potpie or saved for another use.
- Add the shredded chicken to the Dutch oven. Stir to combine. Make sure chicken is heated through before ladling in bowls.
- *If you will be using the broth for soup (instead of adding the dumplings), reserve and chop the vegetables. Add them back to the broth after the broth has been strained. You also have the option of not straining the broth if you are using it for soup. But watch out for the peppercorns!