Remove giblets and neck from chicken; trim excess fat. Place chicken, 10 cups water, and next 7 ingredients (through parsley bunch) in an 8-quart stockpot. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 1 hour, skimming foam from the surface as necessary. Remove from heat, and let stand for 20 minutes.
Remove skin from chicken; remove chicken from bones, discarding skin and bones. Shred chicken with 2 forks. Strain stock through a sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Cool stock and chicken to room temperature. Cover and chill stock and chicken separately for 8 to 24 hours. Skim solidified fat from surface of stock; discard fat. Reserve 8 cups stock and chicken. Refrigerate remaining stock in an airtight container for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 3 months.
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add 1 cup onion, 1/4 cup celery, and sliced carrot to pan; cook 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in 1 tablespoon flour, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and ground pepper; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Stir in 8 cups reserved stock. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Weigh or lightly spoon 5 ounces flour (about 1 cup) into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, stirring with a whisk. Cut in remaining 2 tablespoons butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk, stirring until moist.
Drop dough in 24 portions (about 1 teaspoon each) into stock mixture. Cover and cook 8 minutes. Gently stir in reserved shredded chicken and thyme. Simmer over very low heat for 6 minutes or until thoroughly heated and dumplings are done. Remove from heat, and ladle into shallow bowls. Sprinkle evenly with chopped parsley.
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Fabulous flavor - great on a chilly day. I cheated on this recipe - instead of making this from scratch, I bought a rotisserie chicken and good chicken stock at the store. I ended up following the recipe from that point on and it came out perfect. Will be making this again for sure.
This dish was a lot of work, but well worth it! Made as directed - found that the dumplings fell apart even though I added them very carfully to the broth. Also the dumplings seemed bland - perhaps adding some herbs to them would give them some punch. Flavors were fabulous, even my vegetarian daughter wanted me to make the meat larger so she could pick it out and eat the rest! Was left with approx 5 cups of homemade chicken stock to freeze and use later - an extra bonus!!
I'm all about making my own stock so this was right up my alley! My picky fiancé was hooked after the first bite Nd he went back for seconds. This was my first time making Chicken and Dumplings, I've always associated it w my childhood and my grandmother. This was absolutely perfect! The only changes I made were using whole wheat flour and adding cumin to the stock (I always do). Will be making this again in the coming weeks.
Great flavors, a little time consuming, but so worth it. I broiled my dumplings at the end and love how that turned out. Read the full review at http://www.dishoverdinner.com/2013/10/rockcroc-chicken-and-dumplings.html