With the world in unsettling turmoil, families want to hunker down and be together. What better time than the Thanksgiving holiday where our thoughts go to family, cooking and the Thanksgiving day feast.
This year I want to share with you my recipe for turkey stuffing. It started out as a basic stuffing recipe, but each year I look at ways to improve it. This is what I will use to stuff my turkey this Thanksgiving.
This recipe makes approximately 8 cups stuffing. Allow about ¾ cup per pound of turkey. I usually roast a large turkey and will typically at least double this recipe.
1 ½ cups chopped celery
1 cup chopped onion
¾ cup butter (I use smart balance)
8 cups soft bread crumbs (cut into cubes)
3 cups chopped apple
2 cups chopped pecans
1 lb. package of Jimmy Dean Hot pork sausage
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 tsp. ground sage (if I still have some fresh from the garden I put in about 2 Tbls. Chopped fresh sage)
¾ tsp. dried thyme leaves
In a large pot, melt the butter or Smart Balance and sauté the onions and celery until tender. Remove from heat and stir in about ¼ of the bread cubes.
In a separate pan, sauté the sausage until brown and crumbly.
Mix the remaining bread cubes, sausage, pecans, apples and spices with the sautéed onion and celery. Stir to mix all together and stuff into turkey just prior to roasting.
My dressing gets a little more complicated because I have one vegetarian who can’t eat the sausage or the dressing if it is cooked in the turkey. I have another person who likes the sausage but can’t eat the nuts. So I mix every thing together except the sausage and nuts. Then I put a little dressing in a small oven proof dish and add a little sausage. This is for the non-nut eater. Next I add all the nuts to the remaining stuffing and make a small dish for the vegetarian. Finally, I add the sausage to the dressing and this goes into the turkey. Unfortunately, the vegetarian and non-nut eater don’t get their stuffing cooked in the turkey, but I dribble a little melted butter or Smart Balance over the stuffing in their dishes, cover with aluminum foil and bake in the oven with the turkey.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
P.S. Don’t forget small business Saturday and support your local quilt store and any other small business you like in your neighborhood. If you want the businesses to be there when you need them, they need your support.