It’s Time For Thanksgiving Recipe!

It’s time for Thanksgiving recipe? But you are at a loss for what to make for the big meal? Are you itching to try something special? Here is a recipe “Best Turkey Stuffing” from  John Spottiswood.

This recipe is a combination and adaptation of two great stuffing recipes found in the New Best Recipe cookbook by Cook’s Illustrated (one of our favorites for traditional dishes). We took this to an early friend’s thanksgiving party and it was a huge hit. There were three different stuffings served, and this one was by far the most consumed. If you like plain stuffing or exotic stuffing, look elsewhere. This is just an incredibly rich and tasty combination of hearty ingredients that explodes in your mouth.

1 pound high quality sweet Italian sausage removed from skin and crumbled

4 Tbsp olive oil (or 1/2 stick unsalted butter if you like)

1 large onion chopped

4 medium celery ribs

8-10 ounces of cremini (brown) or white mushrooms

1/2 tsp each dried sage, dried thyme, dried marjoram, and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped fine

2 cups toasted nuts (I used a mix of pine nuts, slivered almonds, and roughly chopped pecans, and briefly toasted in a saute pan)

1 tsp kosher salt or 1/2 tsp regular salt

12 cups chopped toasted bread cubes (I used half whole wheat and half white- see instructions below)

1 cup chicken broth or stock

3 large eggs, lightly beaten (I tossed one of the yolks before beating).

Lay the bread slices single layer on baking sheets or racks and let them sit out over night. The next day cut them into 1/2 inch cubes and let them sit out another night. If you’re in a rush, place the baking sheets in a 225 F oven for 20 minutes, remove and cut into 1/2 inch cubes, then put them back in the oven for an additional 10 minutes. Then remove.

Cook the sausage in a large skillet over medium heat until browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a large bowl. Discard the fat in the pan and add the olive oil to the same pan.

Add the onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally over medium heat until soft, 4-5 minutes. Add the mushrooms, dried herbs and pepper and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the mushrooms are wilted. Transfer to the bowl with the sausage. Add the parsley, nuts, and salt and mix to combine. Add the bread cubes to the bowl.

Whisk the stock and eggs together in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the bread cubes. Gently toss to distribute teh ingredients as evenly as possible.

If cooking outside the turkey, bake in a lightly buttered or oiled casserole dish covered with foil or a lid at 400 F about 25 minutes. Remove the foil or lid and continue to bake until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes more.

If cooking part inside the turkey, microwave 4-5 cups of stuffing on high for 6-8 minutes till piping hot. Stuff into the turkey with a spoon (it should be too hot to handle). Then proceed with cooking the turkey. The reason to microwave the stuffing is that cold stuffing in a bird will require you to cook the turkey much longer (drying out the breast), than hot stuffing will. And though microwaving slightly dries out the stuffing, that just means it absorbs even more of the yummy turkey juices! Give it a try!

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