So this year, we cooked a good bit of the Christmas dinner at Heather’s grandparents’ house.. It afforded them the opportunity to relax, and me the opportunity to experiment a little. So, I finally got my chance to fry a turkey and make the stuffing. The turkey was very good, having bought one of the foo-foo organic, free-range, went to the right schools, and lovingly attended to, right up until its beheading birds, then brined it myself before frying it up.. But this post isn’t about the fried turkey I made, which was delicious, by the way. This post is about stuffing.
Yes, I called it stuffing, despite the fact that I never shoved it up inside an animal to cook it. Don’t get all snippy & pedantic here, it’s just stuffing. Very tasty stuffing, but still, just stuffing. I also shamelessly lifted this from a recipe of Anne Burrell’s from the Food Network site, though I changed it up a bit to call it my own. The original recipe called for “spicy sausage”. This spawned much debate between the people behind the meat counter at the market down the road. We ended up settling on Andouille, since it offers a little spice, but not enough to knock you over. It all melded really well in the end.
The recipe calls for 10 cups of stale cornbread. I had no idea how much 10c of cornbread was, but happily, there was a video on the Food Network site, showing Anne Burrell and Ted Allen making the stuffing. In it, they used 2 8×8 pans of cornbread. To me, that’s a much more sensible measurement than “10 cups”. But I digress. Here we go.
- 1 large onion, fine dice
- 3 ribs celery, fine dice
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed, then finely diced
- 10 sage leaves, finely chopped
- Leaves from 3 sprigs of rosemary, finely chopped
- Kosher salt
- 1 pound of Andouille sausage, removed from the casings
- 2 cups dried cranberries (an 8 ounce package was just enough)
- 2 8×8 pans of stale cornbread, cut into 1″ chunks (I used a mix from Krusteaz, and it turned out well).
- 3-4 cups chicken stock (I used low-sodium, so I could add salt if it needed it)
Coat the bottom of a big sauté pan with olive oil (again, get the kind made with real virgins, alright?), and sauté the onions & celery over medium-high heat until they’re softening up. Hit that veg with some salt and pepper to season it up. Next, add the sausage, breaking it up into small bite-sized chunks and cook until the sausage starts to brown. Add the garlic and keep going for another 1-2 minutes, then add the sage & rosemary, and keep cooking for another minute or two.
Get a big bowl, dump in the cornbread, cranberries and the contents of your sauté pan, along with 3 cups of the chicken stock. Now get in there with your hands and mix it all up thoroughly. The cornbread should be wet when you’re done. Dump all that into 1 large or 2 small baking dishes and chuck it into a 350F oven for about 30-35 minutes.
This was one of the best stuffings I’ve ever had, and everyone loved it. It even looks a little Christmas-ish with the red cranberries, and the piney-aroma of the rosemary.