Chicken-and-Dumpling Soup


1tablespoon unsalted butter
4cloves garlic, minced
2carrots, diced
1bulb celery root, peeled and finely diced
1turnip, peeled and finely diced
1rutabaga, peeled and finely diced
1onion, finely diced
1bulb fennel, finely diced
Kosher salt
4cups white wine
1tablespoon fennel seeds, toasted
4sprigs fresh thyme
2bay leaves
12½-pound organic chicken
1cup milk
½cup chicken fat (sold fresh or frozen in tubs at gourmet stores)
2tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
½teaspoon ground nutmeg
Freshly ground pepper
cups all-purpose flour
3large eggs
1tablespoon chopped fresh parsley


Melt the butter in a 6-quart pot over medium heat. Add the garlic, carrots, celery root, turnip, rutabaga, onion, diced fennel and a large pinch of salt; cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, 6 cups water, fennel seeds, thyme and bay leaves; bring to a simmer. Add the chicken and simmer for 2 hours. Remove the chicken and let cool. Pick off the meat in shreds; set aside. About 15 minutes before the chicken has finished simmering, prepare the dumplings: Combine the milk, chicken fat, 1 tablespoon tarragon, the nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat; add the flour and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until the liquid is absorbed. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, to make a thick dough. Bring the soup to a boil. Form the dough into eight dumplings (an ice cream scoop is perfect for this); drop into the soup. Cover and cook until the dumplings float to the surface, about 10 minutes. Add the chicken meat, parsley and the remaining 1 tablespoon tarragon to the soup; stir carefully and divide among warm bowls. Photograph by Yunhee Kim