Saturday, November 21, 2009

Traditional Sausage Stuffing and Apple Cranberry Stuffing with Pecans

Call me old fashioned but, there is nothing as good as the old fashioned traditional sausage stuffing at Thanksgiving. I make it exactly the same way as my mom makes hers and it has become a tradition in my household. I brown the meat and steam the vegetables  the night before and then stick the whole pan into the fridge. I also cube my bread the day before and season it. On Thanksgiving day all I have to do is bring the sausage mixture back up to a simmer and  dump it over the bread cubes for perfect stuffing ready to go into the oven.
I always make 2 kids of stuffing. Regular traditional sausage stuffing made with Sage sausage and then a  Apple Cranberry Stuffing made with Maple flavored sausage, fresh apples, dried cranberries and chopped pecans. Once you have the basic recipe you can doctor it up anyway you want. 

Both start the exact same way and then you can add to it any way you'd like.
Here is the basic ingredients for Traditional Sausage Stuffing
1 Lb of Sausage- any flavor you like. I prefer the sage. I really like Jimmy Dean but any kind you like is fine.
1 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
1/4 cup of butter
1 loaf of good sturdy white bread. I like Pepperidge Farm's  white sandwich bread cut into 1/2" or so cubes- crust and all.
2 tsp crushed sage- 1 tsp if you are using the Sage stuffing
1/2 tsp ground pepper
Salt to taste.

For the Apple Cranberry Stuffing with Pecans, you'll need these additional ingredients:
2 apples peeled, cored and chopped
1/2 cup of pecans
1/2 cup of dried cranberries
  • Cube the bread and place it into a large bowl that has a lid, if you are not using sage sausage, sprinkle the dried sausage and pepper over the top of the bread cubes and toss until mixed. Place the lid on and set aside. 
  • Place the sausage and the chopped onions into a large frying pan- that has a lid. 
  • Over Medium to Med-High heat, brown the sausage and the onions until the meat is completely cooked through.

  • Place the celery, and butter for the traditional and the celery, apples, pecans, dried cranberries and the butter on top of the sausage and onion mixture. DO NOT STIR. 
    •  Place the lid on and turn the heat off. Let sit for 20 minutes. This allows the celery and apples to soften but not get smoochy. 
      • If you are doing this a day ahead, Place the pan into the fridge at this point. The next day, remove from the fridge and over medium heat stir the ingredients for 10 minutes or until everything is heated through again. 
    • After the 20 minutes, dump the meat and veggie  mixture over the top of the bread cubes and stir until combined. Place into a greased casserole dish and bake for 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degrees until heated through. If the stuffing seems too dry you can use some canned chicken stock to moisten it or pan juices from the turkey.
    I'll tell you that it has become a tradition for my girls and I to eat a small bowl of stuffing, scooped right out of the big bowl, for breakfast before spooning it into the casserole dishes. We love it.

    2 comments:

    Tamara aka Cheapskate Mom said...

    Yummers!! Makes me want to have stuffing! We are skipping the traditional Thanksgiving for the first time this year (due to a hectic schedule preparing for our move) We are having crab legs and shrimp, lol

    Albertsons has crab legs on sale for 6.99 a lb!

    We did buy a turkey since after buying the legs we qualified for a 35 cents per lb bird, lol!

    Thanks for your offer to help with advice, I would love any you have to offer. Right now we are prepping to put home on market hopefully later this week!

    kys said...

    That sounds yummy! I know that your family enjoyed it today.

    PS Thanks for sticking up for me on Stir-Fry the other day. I really appreciate it!