Perfect for a cold, rainy night, chicken and dumplings is a classic American comfort food dish that I originally found a recipe for in the Little Big Book of Comfort Food, but has evolved over time since I began making it in the easiest of all cooking appliances — the slow cooker.

Ingredients

For the chicken

  • 1 whole chicken, quartered (your butcher can do this)
  • 1 Tablespoon softened butter
  • 1/2 Teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Cup baby carrots
  • 2 turnips, sliced into large sections
  • 4 stalks of celery cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 medium onions, sliced into large sections
  • 32 Ounce low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 bouquet garni

For the dumplings

  • 2 Cup flour
  • 1 Teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • 3 Tablespoon melted butter
  • 3/4 Cup milk
  • 1/4 Cup chopped fresh chives

Preparation

For the chicken: Step 1

Rub the chicken pieces with the softened butter and season with salt and pepper and put aside.

Step 2

Place the vegetables in the bottom of the slow cooker, add the broth and bouquet garni, and then place the chicken pieces on top so that they are half-submerged in the broth. Cook on high for 3-4 hours (or if your slow cooker has a temperature probe, cook until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 175 degrees.)

For the dumplings: Step 1

When the chicken is done, remove the chicken pieces and put in a warmed oven (about 200 degrees or less).

Step 2

Keep the slow cooker on high. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the butter, milk, and chives.

Step 3

Using a spoon, place balls of dough into the broth in the slow cooker. Cover and let cook for 10 minutes, then turn the dumplings and cook for another 10-15 minutes, until puffed up and soft all the way through.