Dressing Your Bird - Thanksgiving Recipes
Americans are as passionate about their holiday stuffing as they are about politics and baseball
The beauty of stuffing is that inventive cooks can update traditional mixtures and ingredients, creating new combinations and forging Thanksgiving classics of their own. Cultures and tastes are wide-ranging, from East Indian stuffing with pineapple and curry to hot Mexican stuffing with salsa.
Most dressings start with bread— French bread, brioche, challah. West Coast cooks often opt for sourdough. Southern chefs use cornbread. Your special diet should not prevent you from savoring your favorite dressing. Gluten-free, dairy-free breads make delicious stuffing. Even the most discerning palates won’t be able to tell the difference.
So stake your claim on a heritage and a combination of flavors that call to you and create your own signature dish. Or enjoy this recipe for Apple Vegetable Stuffing that evolved in my kitchen – and make it your own.
Apple Vegetable Stuffing
MAKES 12 TO 14 CUPS
This recipe makes enough to stuff a 14-pound bird with some left over. It can also be baked in two 9x9-inch baking pans. Vary ingredients to suit your taste.
1 pound sausage,* diced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 medium leeks, chopped (white and pale green parts only)
2 medium apples (Granny Smith or other), peeled, cored, chopped
1½ cups chopped celery with leaves
2 medium carrots or parsnips or rutabagas, peeled and chopped
2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
2 teaspoons chopped dried rosemary
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
10 cups gluten-free/dairy-free bread,** crust removed, cut into
3/4-inch cubes, toasted
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 eggs or flax gel (see page 62) or omit eggs and add ½ cup additional liquid
1 to 1½ cups gluten-free chicken broth
3/4 cup chestnut or walnut pieces, toasted, optional
1. Brown sausage in 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet and transfer to a large bowl.
2. In the same skillet, heat remaining oil over medium heat. Add leeks, apples, celery, carrots and poultry seasoning. Sauté until leeks and carrots soften, about 4 to 6 minutes. Pour into the bowl with the cooked sausage and blend.
3. Add rosemary, parsley and toasted bread cubes to sausage mixture. Stir gently to combine. Season stuffing to taste with salt and pepper. This recipe can be prepared a day ahead to this point. Cover and refrigerate.
4. Beat eggs with 1 cup chicken broth. Toss stuffing with egg mixture. Add chestnuts or walnuts, if using. Stuffing should be moist but not wet. If it’s too dry, add more broth. Check seasonings by browning a spoonful of stuffing in a skillet or heating it in the microwave until cooked. Taste and adjust seasonings.
5. Divide the stuffing into two portions. Cook one portion in the turkey.
6. Place remaining stuffing in a lightly oiled baking dish and cover with oiled foil. Bake alongside the stuffed bird about 45 to 60 minutes in 325 to 350-degree oven. Uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes until stuffing is golden brown on top.
Each serving contains:
311 calories, 15g total fat, 4g saturated fat,
0g trans fat, 58mg cholesterol, 36g carbohydrate, 335 sodium, 2g fiber, 9g protein
*TIP Try chicken-apple sausage, Italian sausage, breakfast sausage or spicy andouille sausage.
**TIP 10 cups is equivalent to a large loaf of bread. Toast the cubes in a 350-degree oven for about 15 minutes. Ten cups of commercially prepared gluten-free stuffing cubes may be used. LW