Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday dinner

Trying to avoid the mayhem of NFL playoffs happening in my living room (also while waiting for Comcast to stop failing at life), I spent today cooking up a storm.

First, I used a no-knead bread recipe and made jumbo muffins, which turned out beautifully:


Next up, I made Jake's mother and grandmother's chicken and dumplings, along with Mark Bittman's popovers. For the first time ever, one of Bittman's recipes didn't go perfectly, and there was quite a bit o smoke in our apartment for a while.  

 They're a little burnt, but more or less OK. And we got the windows open pretty quick, so no major damage. :)  But learned the valuable lesson that our oven doesn't do well at 450F or higher.

Seasoned chicken over a bed of sliced onions, slice 6 TBS butter pats and arrange on top of chicken, cover with foil and roast 30-45 mins.

Dumplings boiled in homemade stock

The popovers, chicken and dumplings, and my first attempt at gravy (went surprisingly well) -- a really nice Sunday dinner. :) Definitely comfort food.


Whole wheat walnut muffins:
1 2/3 c buttermilk or yogurt, or both (I used 6 oz yogurt, 1 c buttermilk)
1/2 c molasses (or honey + an egg)
2 1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c corn meal or white flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2-1 c nuts/seeds (I used 1 handful walnuts and 1 handful pepitas)

Sift together dry ingredients in a medium bowl
Whisk together wet ingredients
Mix wet into dry until a crumbly batter forms.
Spoon into jumbo sized muffin tins (about 3/4 way full), brush with melted butter
Bake at 350 for 20 mins, rotating pan halfway through
(Can also bake in a loaf tin 50 mins-1 hr at 325)

Chicken gravy:
1 c chicken stock (I used about half of what was left from boiling the dumplings)
pan drippings from chicken and dumplings
3/4 c milk
1-2 TBS corn starch

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan, whisk hard to combine corn starch before it sets. (I let mine sit a little, and it boiled, like little corn starch dumplings... if this happens, strain your gravy at the end)
Continue whisking 5-8 minutes until gravy darkens and thickens.
I didn't season mine at all, but the butter and drippings from the chicken pan had been well seasoned with salt, pepper, paprika and garlic.
 The homemade stock also had a ton of flavor -- if using storebought stock, consider adding a bayleaf or other seasonings.
Serve over chicken, dumplings and popovers.

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