• Serves: 5 complete meals
  • Approximate costs: $3.15 per serving; $15.75 to feed a family of 5
  • .650 kg chicken pieces, (equivalent of 4 thighs), skinless, bone-in
  • Canola oil as needed
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2/3 cup pot barley
  • 1 small yellow onion, (about 1/2 cup), diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 stalks celery, (about 2/3 cup), diced
  • 1/3 cup baby carrots, sliced into coins
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 medium-sized potatoes (about 1-1/2 cups), peeled, large bite-sized chunks
  • 1 tablespoon dried chives 
  1. Before beginning the stew, prepare the dumpling batter, as shown below. (if using.)

  1. Brown the chicken in oil in a Dutch oven. Cook over medium-high heat for 5 to 6 minutes, turning to cook both sides. 

  1. Add the stock, barley, onion, bay leaf and black pepper. Bring to boil. Cook, partly covered, over a moderate heat for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. 

  1. Remove the chicken and allow to cool. Add the celery, carrots and 2 cups water to the stew. Bring back to boil. Cook for another 5 minutes. 

  1. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Stir the potatoes into the stew. Add the dumpling batter to the pot as shown in the dumpling recipe below (if using). Cook with or without the dumplings for another 20 minutes. 

  1. Meanwhile, shred the chicken into large pieces and discard the bones. Cover with foil.

  1. Place the dumplings into a serving bowl; cover with foil and keep warm. Place the chicken back into the stew. Discard the bay leaf. Stir the chives into the stew. 

  1. Top each individual serving of stew with dumplings.

Calories: 340 calories per serving, plus 140 more calories for the dumplings; fat content: 8.7 g fat per serving


Yields: 10 to 12 dumplings/4 to 5 servings

  • 1-1/4 cups white all purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons non-hydrogenated (soft) margarine
  • 2/3 cup skim milk

Prepare the batter before starting your stew. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Stir. Cut in the margarine with a pastry cutter, or with a fork, until the mixture takes on the appearance of small peas. Gradually add the milk, stirring with a fork, until all of the batter is moist. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel. Set aside until ready to cook.

Add the dumplings to the stew, 20 minutes before the stew is finished cooking. Form the dumplings into 1 1/2-inch balls. Drop the dumplings on top of the stew, but do not stir in. Keep the pot covered with a lid until the dumplings are cooked. Simmer, over medium-low heat, for 20 minutes, or until the dumplings are cooked through, and no longer runny when pierced with a fork in the center. The dumplings will have a glossy look to them.

Food writer: Carolyn Cashen

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