Tonight I decided to widen my chicken soup repertoire. I wanted something with a really yummy, indulgent something in it - better than a noodle! more sinful than rice! and my kids would eat it! So I decided to look up potato dumplings. I've been gearing myself up to make gnocchi, by which I mean I bought a bag of potatoes and think about doing it every so often - so I thought this would be a good trial run.
Well. There was one recipe re-circulated all over the place - and it used Bisquick to make the dumplings. I found a bisquick-to-food conversion chart but it was for a 9-cup batch so then I tried to do the math while my starved babies wailed on the kitchen floor wondering where dinner was, and threw it all in the pot. the recipe called for 1C mashed potatoes (like that's a discrete ingredient? that I've ever made?) mixed w. 1 1/2 C bisquick (picture my mini-version w.flour, baking soda, sugar, oil, in really vague proportions) - drop it in and let it simmer for 20 minutes.
So the soup came out with that gelatinous thick chicken base that I've always wondered how it was accomplished - now I know - that was either gross or perfect, depending on the weather - today was the end of a blizzard so thumbs up, maybe not many other times of year. . . and some of the dumplings were melt-in-your-mouth perfection; others were little gluey rocks.
My questions are this: what factors cause melt-in-your-mouth v. rock formations, and, can anyone suggest a way to make a potato dumpling that doesn't rely on a recreation of bisquick? what could i use that's in a basic pantry, and in what proportions?
I think part A, getting it to be perfect, will be important to me in the gnochi excercise to come, so I'm eager to know everything there is to know about boiling adulterated lumps of potatoes in water or soup.
Elizabeth in NYC (first time posting to chow hound - that's how badly I want to know!)