Tuesday, January 29, 2008

dumplings tonight

Is is just me, or does everyone get excited by the way dumplings expand to more than twice their original size when you cook them? It's like getting something for nothing.

Two minutes to mix, three minutes in the microwave, and there they are, soft, puffy and delicious.

We're eating dumplings tonight, courtesy of Alison Holst's The Best of Home Cooking, a fantastic book which I bought second hand on AbeBooks from a bookstore in country Victoria, so close to my mother-in-law's house that she drove over to pick it up for me (ah, the joy of the internet, where you can source books all over the world, only to find them surprisingly close to hand).

Alison Holst is deservedly famous in her native New Zealand. She favours traditional home-style family food while catering for modern tastes, is completely non-intimidating (is anyone else terrified by those soft-focus photographs in trendy cookbooks?), and her recipes are easy, adaptable and wonderful. I use her cookbooks more than any of the others on my shelf.

And the dumplings? They were delicious.

Here is the recipe (unlike most of her books, this one's out of print, so it should be ok to reproduce the recipe here). You can use gluten free self-raising flour - my husband's a coeliac, so we usually make it this way.
1/2 cup self-raising flour
pinch of celery salt and garlic salt (I use salt)
1 Tbsp chopped parsley
other herbs to taste (optional)
1/4 cup milk

Combine ingredients in order given, stirring just enough to dampen flour. Pour 1/2 cup hot water in a 23 cm flat-bottomed dish. Drop mixture into water in about 12 small amounts, using two teaspoons. Cover. Cook at Full power for 3 minutes, or until firm. Sprinkle with paprika if desired. Add to individual bowls of cooked soup.
You can add the dumplings to stew as well as soup. And if you like your dumplings crunchy, put them (uncooked) on top of stew (cooked or nearly cooked) and bake it uncovered in a 180°C oven for 20 minutes.

1 comment:

toni said...

These parsley dumplings are delish and I have found they go great in the top of my beer and beef casserole too. Just place in balls ontop of casserole 45 mins before serving (this is in a slowcooker).
They are also great for soaking up excess liquid without drying out the casserole.