Be free-floating, allowing the situation to surround you, and be in it. Take in the full surroundings, including the temperature of the water.
This may bring incredible clarity, presence and focus. This is what is means to be a jellyfish.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday Find - Slow Cooker Chicken and Caribbean Dumplings

For me, it is hard to find a good recipe I can follow directly. I scoured the internet for chicken and dumpling recipes, but wasn't satisfied with any I found. For one, hubby can't have milk or cream, so that ruled out half of them. Second, I didn't happen to have any biscuit mix and I wasn't about to go to the store at 7:30am to get some. Besides, growing up in the 1970's I have had my fill of Bisquick. (my mother didn't use flour at all that I can remember, only Bisquick.) So I found if I took ideas from these recipes, and tweaked them to suit our needs and tastes, I could create my own perfect homestyle meal, and make my own comfort food recipe. 

I love slow cooker meals (I have raved about them before). There is nothing better than coming home from work with dinner ready. No stress for me and a wonderful meal to enjoy with the family. 
For this meal you will need:
Big Ass Chicken

  • One whole Chicken (I got a big ass chicken from Sams Club)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • thyme
  • garlic (powder and fresh)
  • rosemary
  • chicken seasoning
  • onion
  • crushed red pepper
  • chicken broth
  • asparagus
  • Wondra
  • flour
  • water
  • rice

Now I don't measure much when I cook, so bear with this recipe. I will try to guess how much I used, but really the seasonings are totally up to you. We may like things more seasoned (and spicier) than you. So edit as you and your family like.

1. Prep the chicken. I got this big ass chicken from Sam's Club. Why is everything over-sized there? Anyway, clean the chicken, which for me means taking all the skin off. Too much fat, and don't worry, the chicken broth later will add enough to make this tender and juicy.
2. Chop your onion. (1 small onion.)
Naked Chicken and chopped onion
3. Chop garlic cloves. I used about 2 cloves of fresh garlic
4. Now that your chicken is naked, put the chicken in the slow cooker and season. Season with salt and pepper to cover, easier on the pepper. Season with as much crushed red pepper as your family can handle. Use about a tablespoon of thyme and Rosemary, and sprinkle on the chicken. Sprinkle about one teaspoon of garlic powder on the chicken (the chopped garlic will go on in a minute). Sprinkle one teaspoon of chicken seasoning on as well. (I figured the broth would add the rest of the chicken flavor).
chopped garlic, broth, and spices I used
5. Add chicken broth, about 1 cup I figure, then sprinkle onions and garlic on top, and throw some asparagus on top of that (a handful of asparagus). (you may not sprinkle and throw, but you get the idea)
6.Turn on the slow cooker and go about your day. Cook for 8 hours on low, 4 hours on high. (We will roast some more asparagus to go with dinner closer to dinner time.)
Now it's time to let it cook!
7. When the chicken has cooked, it is time to add some Wondra to the broth. Mix about 1-2 teaspoons Wondra in about 1 cup of new chicken broth, then pour into crock-pot slowly, stirring in little sections as you pour. This is to thicken up the broth so it is more stew-like.
Wondra is the best.
8. Now for the dumplings. These are not fancy dumplings. (I learned how to make them when I lived in the Caribbean. They are made to go in many different Caribbean dishes.) Just add flour to bowl (about 2 cups), make an indentation in the middle and pour a little water in there (about half a cup now, and you will need more water as you mix), mix with your hands and add water as necessary until you get a consistency you can mold, but not too sticky.
Add water to the center of the flour, mix,
and then more as necessary to get the right consistency.
Making Dumplings.
9. Make little dumplings! If they start getting sticky, add some flour.
Feel free to get creative here. I had my son help me and we had several different shaped dumplings. Poop shaped (he named), cow patty shaped (I named), ring shaped, fish shaped, man shaped (his creation, was half a man by the time dinner was ready, lol. he broke into 2 pieces.), question marked, diamond shaped, and I don't even know what else. Have some fun.
Just some of the crazy shapes
10. Add to the crock pot and cook until done, about 30 minutes.
11. Make some rice to serve under the chicken and dumplings. 
12. Roast some more asparagus.To roast, lay on baking sheet, spray with olive oil cooking spray, and season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Roast in 350 degree oven for about 7 minutes if you like it crunchy still.
We like asparagus crunchy,
so we roast separately and serve on the side.

13. Serve and enjoy!
I started eating before I remember to snap a picture for you all.
It was so good.
As I look at the ingredients and steps, it seems like a lot of prep, but really it isn't. You can add or subtract seasonings to your taste, and making the dumplings is so easy, and fun! 

I absolutely loved how this meal turned out. I also loved how it was nearly done when I got home from work, and how my son made it even more fun to finish off. 

Leftovers are just as good!
I am also having the leftovers for lunch. Yumm.

Do you have any great slow cooker recipes that you have changed to make more healthy, and fit your family better? Share the love please!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you posted this today--it looks yummy and I am a HUGE crockpot fan!!!


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