1 2 ½ to 3 pound broiler-fryer or stewing hen, cut into serving pieces
1 bay leaf
1 onion, chopped
1 celery rib, sliced
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt (optional)
½ cup broth from cooking chicken
Remove any visible fat from chicken.
Rinse chicken with cold running water; blot dry with paper towels.
In large pot or Dutch oven combine chicken, about 3 quarts water, bay leaf, bay leaf, onion, celery, salt (if desired), and pepper.
Over medium-high heat, bring to boil; reduce heat to simmer.
Cook, partially covered, until chicken is tender and easily pierced with fork, about 45 minutes (longer for stewing hen).
Meanwhile prepare dumplings. Into large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt (if desired).
Stir in 1 cup chicken broth until blended. Knead into stiff dough.
On floured surface, roll dough out to ½ inch thick.
Cut into strips about 1 ½ inches wide and 2 inches long.
During last 15 minutes of chicken cooking time, one at time, drop dumplings into pot.
Cover and cook until chicken and dumplings are done.