How to Make Dumplings Without Using Suet

I love dumplings – and I’m sure you do too, but the thing is: do you have any suet in? Most people think you have to use suet to make dumplings and it’s simply not something many people always have in their cupboard – but did you know you don’t need suet to make dumplings?

I’ve used this food cheat quite a few times to make tasty dumplings when I want them, without having to go out food shopping for suet!

Suet is simply a fat. You can make dumplings equally well by using your normal margarine, fat or even butter! Simply substitute the suet.
Dumplings Without Suet
This will work equally well for dumplings in stew, or even if you want to make a sweet dumpling. The dumpling recipe below is for dumplings to drop into a stew – I’ve even been known to just make up 2 stock cubes and a pint of water, just to make dumplings on their own! Yes, I’ve eaten just a bowl of dumplings as a meal, and loved it!

Food Cheats Dumplings Recipe Without Using Suet:

  • 180 grams of Self Raising flour (or plain flour + 2 teaspoons of baking powder).
  • A large pinch of salt
  • 60 grams of fat, lard, margarine, butter, shortening … whatever fat you have to hand.
  • 180ml milk

Cut up the fat into small pieces and drop it into the flour, using a knife, just mix the flour and fat/butter together until it’s as small as possible. Add the salt and mix through.
Slowly add the milk into the mix until your dumplings are firm, but not wet. If you add too much milk, then just throw in a spoonful of flour. This is where most mistakes might occur, you really need to move the dumpling mix around in your bowl to get it all mixed up, rather than feeling lazy and putting in too much of the milk.

Using floured hands, or a large floured spoon, make your dumplings (I like to put them onto a plate ready to drop into the liquid. They should be firm, but not compressed/squashed.

Bring your stew to the boil, making sure there’s enough liquid for the dumplings to swim in – or you can just make up a gravy on its own in a saucepan with a couple of Oxo cubes/stock cubes and water. Drop the dumplings into the liquid and bring to the boil, cover the saucepan with a lid. After 10 minutes carefully flip each dumpling over and put the lid back on. After another 10 minutes the dumplings should be ready to eat…. and lovely and fluffy. If they turn out a bit solid, then try to use a bit less milk next time, or make sure you’re not squashing your dumplings too tight, or make sure there’s enough liquid for them and enough room for them to expand. if they’re a bit squidgy in the middle, then the same rules apply, or maybe they need another 5 minutes!

Now – I know photos would be good at this point, but I’m on the road travelling at the moment, so can’t make these to show you!! I’m craving a kitchen where I can make some hot dumplings …. and once I’ve got that I can take some snaps for you guys!

Image CC BY 2.0 by Daniel Morrison

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