Oh Deen family, how I love thee! This recipe is borrowed from Paula Deen's The Deen Family Cookbook, and this recipe in particular is created by Michael, Paula's husband. Enjoy!
One 3 1/2 pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
4 sprigs fresh parsley
4 stalks celery with leaves, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 medium yellow onion, cut into chunks
3 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 cups plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons shortening, melted
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1.) Put the chicken in a slow cooker and cover with water. Add the parsley sprigs, celery, carrots, onion, 2 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, the pepper, and bay leaves. Cook for 3 hours on high or for 7 hours on low, until the meat falls from the bone.
2.) In a bowl, combine the 1 1/2 cups flour, the baking powder, and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. In a separate bowl, combine the milk and shortening. Stir the liquid into the dry ingredients. Fold in the chopped parsley. Drop the dumplings by tablespoon into the chicken broth. Cover the slow cooker and simmer on low for 40 to 45 minutes, until tender and cooked through.
3.) Transfer the dumplings to another bowl using a slotted spoon. Transfer the chicken to another bowl. Once it's cool enough to handle, separate the chicken meat from the skin and bones and discard the skin and bones. Strain the broth into a medium sauce pan and discard the vegetables.
4.) Mix the butter and the 3 tablespoons flour to form a paste. Bring the broth to a simmer over medium heat. Whisk in the paste and let simmer until thick, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chicken to the sauce, then spoon the mixture over the dumplings to serve.