Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with a paper towel.
Place a heavy 6 quart stock pot or preferably a cast iron dutch oven on the stove top to heat over medium high heat while you begin preparations for the chicken.
Put another saucepan of water on the stove to boil ( 2-4 quarts).
Melt the butter in the dutch oven on the stove top.
Place the flour into a paper sack.
Put the chicken pieces one by one (as you are ready to use them) into the paper sack and shake it thus coating each piece of chicken very well with flour.
Just as the butter in the dutch oven starts to turn brown, place the chicken pieces (no more than 2 at a time) in the butter and allow the skin to brown and crisp on each side. Brown each piece on all sides and then remove from the pot to a separate plate (the chicken won’t be cooked through - so don’t worry about that - we are just doing this to build flavor).(Add more butter if you need to as you fry to keep the pan wet to allow the frying process to take place).
When all of the chicken has been browned and removed to a plate, add the onion, garlic, carrot and celery and let those cook in the butter to brown slightly. Then add the chicken pieces back to the pot and fill the pot with just enough boiling water to cover the chicken. (If you don't have quite enough boiling water, just add a little tap water).
Add the salt and pepper and bay leaves.
Place the lid on the dutch oven and reduce the heat to medium low until water comes to a simmer (small barely there bubbling action).
Let simmer until the chicken is tender and cooked through. The water will thicken slightly due to the flour on the chicken.
Once the chicken is cooked through, use a wire mesh skimmer to scoop the chicken, onion, garlic, carrot, celery and bay leaves from the pot and place on a clean plate (not the same one you used for the browned chicken meat). Remove the dutch oven from the heat and set aside.
Allow the chicken to cool enough that you can safely touch it and then remove the chicken meat from the bone. Discard the skin, bones and any organ tissue. Reserve the meat.
Place the chicken meat back in the cooking liquid and return to the stove top over medium heat. Not all of the chicken will be completely covered probably. That is ok.
Sift together the flour, salt and baking powder. Slowly add the milk and mix with a spoon until the batter just comes together.
Once the chicken mixture is again simmering, Drop scant teaspoonfuls of the biscuit mix into the simmering liquid. The biscuits will immediately expand and bob on the surface. Some will rest on top of pieces of the chicken. This is all desired and the way things should be.
Once all of the dumpling mix is added to the pot, put the lid back on and allow to simmer for 10 minutes. (see tips and tricks). After 10 minutes, check one of the dumplings to make sure it is cooked through - you can remove one and cut in half to see or remove one and taste it to see. If not done, replace the lid and simmer and check in 5 minute intervals until done.