Dumpling. A ball of dough, originally savoury and served as an accompaniment to meat or as a dessert…A simple, satisfying food, dumplings were boiled and served to extend small amounts of meat. Originally made by shaping small portions from a batch of bread dough before specific mixtures were developed using flour, cereals, pulses, stale bread, potatoes or cheese, sometimes with a raising agent added or enriched with fat in the form of suet, were developed. Local ingredients and method are used across Europe to make a variety of large or small dumplings, plain or flavoured with herbs, vegetables, spices or other ingredients…Dumplings are closely related to pasta. Italian gnocchi are good examples of small dumplings usually grouped with pasta and the spatzle of German and Austria, made from batter simmered until set in finger noodles, also hover between the two descriptions. Polish plain or filled dumplings are also very similar to gnocchi or filled pasta…The name dumpling is also used for Oriental specialties, such as the small filled dumplings of Chinese cookery, related more closely to pasta than European-style dumplings.” Larousse Gastronomique, Completely Revised, and Updated Clarkson Potter: New York 2002 (p. 437-8)

[48] Dumplings of the Pheasant [Isiia Plena] [Lightly roast choice] fresh pheasants [cut them into dice and mix these with a ] stiff forcemeat made of the fat and the trimmings of the pheasant, season with pepper, broth and reduced wine, shape into croquettes or spoon dumplings, and poach in hydrogarum [water seasoned with garum, or even plain salt water].

[49] Dumplings and Hydrogarym [Hydrogarata Isicia] Crush pepper, lovage and just a suspicion of pellitory, moisten with stock and well water, allow it to draw, place it in a saucepan, boil it down, and strain. Poach your little dumplings or forcemeat in this liquor and when they are done served in a dish for isicia, to be sipped at the table.”

[52] Plain Dumplings with Broth [Isicium Simplex] To 1 acetabulum of stock add 7 of water, a little green celery, a little spoonful of ground pepper, and boil this with the sausage meat of dumplings. If you intend taking this to move the bowels the sediment salts of hydrogarum have to be added.” Cookery and Dining in Imperial Rome, Apicius, edited and translated by Joseph Dommers Vehling [Dover: New York] 1977(p. 65-66)

Mushroom Dumplings:


  • 1 1/4 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
  • 1 10.5-ounce can condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup chicken stock


  1. Directions
  2. Sift the flour, salt, garlic powder and pepper into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Combine the butter into flour with your hands until well incorporated. Add the chives and the soup. Mix together well with your hands to form a soft dumpling dough. Drop the dumpling dough by the tablespoonfuls into the strained liquid with an additional 1 cup of chicken stock. Cook the dumplings for 8 to 10 minutes. 



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