October 19, 2011

Reasons I love fall (Number 3)

Comfort food.

Tonight I made one of my all time favorite comfort foods - Chicken and Dumplings.

This recipe is quick and extremely easy (I use frozen dumplings) and oh-so-yummy.

Chicken and Dumplings

Step 1 - Poach Chicken

chicken, 5-6 lbs with skin and bones (I used 4 breasts and 8 thighs)
2 teaspoons salt
2 carrots, each cup in 3 or 4 pieces
1 onion, quartered
4 springs parsley
2 stalks celery, quartered
water to cover

Place chicken into a large pan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and add all other ingredients. Cover pot and simmer for 45 - 50 minutes or until done. Let chicken cool in broth. Remove chicken from pot, discard skin and remove meat from bones. Shred or cut meat into desired size pieces and store in a covered container in the refrigerator until ready to use. Strain broth and store for another use (broth may be frozen for up to 1 month).

Step 2 - Prepare dumplings

Fill pot with 90 ounces of store-bought chicken stock and bring to a boil.

Add 2 packages of frozen dumplings (I prefer Reames Homestyle Flat Dumplings or Mary B's Open Kettle Dumplings) and cook; following package directions, until done.

When dumplings are cooked to desired consistency slowly stir in one can of Campbell's condensed Cream of Chicken Soup to dumpling/stock mixture until dissolved completely.

Add chicken to dumpling mixture and simmer slowly until desired consistency (25-30 minutes).

October 14, 2011

Reasons I love fall (Number 2)


Seriously, need I say more?

October 6, 2011

Reasons I love the fall (Number 1)...

As has been well documented here, here and here I adore the fall.

I honestly can't understand how anyone could not.

After all, what is there not to love?

I suppose I should mention that I live in Texas. Anyone who has survived a Texas summer knows that we Texans welcome the arrival of cooler weather with great adoration.

As the change in temperature occurs and the earth begins to cool down it is as if Mother Nature breaths a great sigh of relief, relaxes and reveals her true colors.

And what spectacular colors they are. Deeply intense colors of golds, amethysts, reds and orange.

Just imagine it.

Can you see the colors in your mind?

Can you feel the freshness in the air?

Can you imagine it?

Just for a minute, close your eyes.

Imagine you're walking down a country road on a crisp fall day.

Each side of the road is lined with towering trees.

Each tree adorns its most glorious fall wares.

Now, take a deep breath.

In through your nose and out through your mouth.

And another.

And should you choose, take another.

Think about those breathes.

How did they feel?

Were they cleansing?

Did they invigorate you?

Did they add a little perk to your step?

I'd be surprised if they didn't.

Those breathes, they are just one of the things I love about fall.

I love the fall colors and the fall air and the way they cleanse my soul.