Csirke paprikas galuskaval is a saucy batch of chicken and dumplings flavored with paprika, tomatoes, and cloves. Unlike chicken and dumpling soup, this is an intense dish to which the dumplings bring balance by breaking up the concentrated flavors. Browning the chicken adds a lot of body and is a crucial step. If the chicken is browned too lightly or not at all, the stew will lose its savory, smoky personality. Csirke paprikas galuskaval is tasty enough by itself, but it’s often served with pickled vegetables.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- One 3- to 4-pound chicken, cut into serving pieces
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped fine
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped fine
- 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 3 whole cloves
- 4 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded (see Notes), and chopped fine
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 green bell peppers, cored and sliced into ¼-inch rings
- ¼ cup sour cream (optional)
- 1½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1. Make the Stew: Melt the butter in a large, wide pot over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces in one layer and do not stir until the undersides are dark golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn the chicken pieces over and brown the other side, about 8 minutes longer. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, move the chicken to a plate, leaving behind the buttery fat. Place the onion, garlic, paprika, and cloves in the pot. Stir frequently until the onion just begins to soften, about 4 minutes. Mix in the tomatoes, salt, and pepper and scrape up any sticky bits from the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. If there is not enough sauce to coat the bottom of the pot, add no more than ½ cup water.
2. Return the chicken pieces and any drippings to the pot. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes, turning the chicken pieces over halfway through the cooking. There may not appear to be enough liquid, but the chicken will release additional juices as it cooks.
3. Turn the chicken pieces over one more time, stir in the green peppers, cover, and cook for 10 minutes longer. Reduce the heat to very, very low to keep the chicken and sauce hot while making the dumplings. (You can also make the stew in advance and keep it refrigerated in a tightly sealed container for up to 3 days.)
4. Make and cook the dumplings: Fill a large pot halfway with salted water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium for a steady simmer.
5. Combine the flour and the salt in a medium bowl. Add the egg, melted butter, and ¾ cup water and mix well. You will have a very moist, sticky dough.
6. Scoop up a rounded teaspoon of dough. Use another spoon or your finger to move the dough gently off the spoon and into the simmering water. Drop in spoonfuls of the remaining dough, leaving as much space as you can around each. Stir gently to prevent sticking. Cook until all of them are floating, about 2 minutes, then cook for 3 minutes longer.
7. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid, drain the dumplings, and stir them gently into the chicken stew. Raise the heat to medium and heat through for 1 to 2 minutes. If the stew is too thick, stir in some of the reserved cooking liquid. Remove from the heat, swirl in the sour cream, if desired, and serve.
Nutritional information includes optional sour cream.