For the broth:
- 1 large roasting chicken, about 5 pounds, back removed and cut into 8 pieces
- 2 sweet onions, such as Vidalia or Walla Walla, coarsely chopped
- 6 cups chicken broth or water
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
For the dumplings:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup minced fresh soft herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, and green onion tops
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons milk
For the sauce:
- 7 tablespoons butter
- 10 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 3 ribs celery, cut into 1/2-inch pieces on the diagonal
- 4 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces on the diagonal
- 1 large onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup heavy cream or milk
- 1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
Cut chicken backs, necks and wing tips into 1-inch pieces. In a large pot, combine the chicken pieces, onions, chicken broth or water, bay leaves and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, until the chicken is tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the chicken pieces and set aside. Discard the chicken backs, necks, and wing tips. When the chicken pieces have cooled, remove the meat from the bones in chunks and set aside. Discard the skin and bones. Strain the broth and discard solids. Using a spoon, skim the fat from the surface of the broth and discard fat. Set broth aside.
Prepare the dumplings: In a medium bowl, mix the flour, herbs, baking powder, and salt together. In a small saucepan over low heat, bring the butter and milk to a simmer. Add the butter and milk mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring with a fork until the mixture just comes together. Drop batter by spoonfuls onto a baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to use.
In a Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring, until golden-brown, 3 to 4 minutes. When golden brown, whisk in the wine, reserved chicken broth, Essence, and thyme. Cook until sauce has thickened, about 5 minutes, then add the celery, carrots, and onion. Cook until the vegetables are tender-crisp, about 15 minutes. Add the reserved chicken meat, heavy cream or milk, and peas. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Place the dumplings on top of the chicken mixture. Cover and simmer until the dumplings are cooked through, about 15 minutes. Serve in large soup bowls, garnished with the parsley.
Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Yield: 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William Morrow, 1993.