Mess Level: Moderate
Yield: 10 Servings
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 50 min
- 5 Cups Torn, Stale Bread
- 1 lb Jimmy Deans Hot Sausage
- 3 Large Carrots or 1 lb Baby Carrots
- 3 Stalks Celery
- 2 Onions
- 1-2 Cups Stock
- 2 Eggs
- 5 teaspoons Poultry Seasoning
- 2 teaspoons Black Pepper
- Salt to Taste
- Preheat the oven to 350 Fahrenheit.
- In a large dutch oven or deep cast iron skillet cook the sausage until it’s no longer pink. Remove with a slotted spoon.
- Meanwhile, finely dice the carrots, you want them no larger than 1/4 inch dice so they cook through. Alternatively, you may use baby carrots and slice them very thinly, about 1 ½ cups, sliced.
- Add more oil to the cast iron if needed and saute the carrots until soft. Meanwhile Finely dice the onion, then add to the carrots and continue to saute...
- Split the celery stalks into three pieces, lengthwise. Then dice finely and add to the carrots and onions. Saute an additional few minutes adding oil as necessary. Add salt to taste.
- Tear the bread into a large bowl being sure to get plenty of pieces of the crust. Pour a small amount of the stock over it, tossing and mixing lightly with your hands. You want it wet but not soaking. If you like a more crumbly stuffing, use less stock.
- Add the sauteed vegetables and the cooked sausage to the bread mixture and toss together. Add the poultry seasoning, pepper, and salt. Taste and adjust as needed.
- Beat the eggs together with a few Tablespoons of stock, then mix into the stuffing well. Return to the cast iron, don’t worry if the pan is warm. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove the foil and bake an additional 15-20 minutes until the stuffing is set and no longer falls apart and is golden brown on top. Enjoy!
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What if my bread isn’t stale?
- We can fix that!
No problem, slice the loaf in half lengthwise and leave it uncovered, cut side up in the oven at 170 degrees for 2 hours. This will dry it out a bit. Alternatively, you can use the bread fresh. Just be sure to get plenty of crust in the mixture and use the stock sparingly so you don’t over soak it.
What if my bread is rock hard?
- Show it who's boss!
No problem, break it into pieces that will fit in a ziplock back and crush it with a meat mallet. Be careful not to turn it to dust, you’re going for mostly bite-sized pieces. Then follow the recipe and be ready to use a few more Tablespoons of stock.
Why is my stuffing too crumbly?
- A little extra never hurt anyone...
You need to add more stock and mix it more. Mix the bread with your hands in the stock until it’s soft enough you could smush it into a ball. Then use a spoon and really mix all the ingredients together well. Be sure the eggs get mixed in well too, and if you’re really concerned use an extra egg.
What if I over-soaked my stuffing?
- Don't forget to bring a towel...
Don’t panic, drain off excess liquid if there’s that much. Otherwise, it won’t be a problem just be careful not to overwork the wet bread and plan an additional 15 minutes of bake time to evaporate the excess moisture.
How do I know how much seasoning to use?
- Let your taste buds be the judge...
Taste as you go! Seasoning in layers like in this recipe really helps you ensure the whole dish is seasoned through. And you definitely want to use poultry seasoning, but do not overdo it or it will be extremely bitter and the dish will taste dusty. Consider adding other fresh herbs and salt instead.
Ramblings of a Line Cook
Is it actually stuffing if it’s not stuffed inside a bird? Technically no, it would be dressing. But I am rarely one for technicalities and the holidays usually have enough political debate all on their own without bringing up this delicate subject. So let’s call it stuffing since that’s what my mom called it and as we all know, mom is always right.
Growing up we always had a box (actually four boxes) of the Stove Top stuffing that my mom would mix together at the last minute in a metal pot on the stove. My mom was in charge of the turkey, the mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, and some sort of rolls which usually came out of a bag and I always ate too many of.
My grandma brought the best cranberry and orange relish, sweet potato casserole with marshmallows and usually a pumpkin pie and an Oreo cheesecake pie from Price Chopper because the woman knew how to say “I’ve spent enough time in the kitchen.” I think we’ve all gotten a bit of our feminist side from her.
My Grandma would always make the gravy while the turkey was resting and then we’d all sit down at the long, dining room table that over the years has grown longer and eventually spilled into the kitchen to accommodate everyone.
I have very fond memories of that boxed, stuffing mix and it wasn’t until a few years ago that it even occurred to me to make it from scratch. And stuffing with sausage in it? I was blown away.to a very wonderful place filled with flavor and poultry seasoning.
This recipe is inspired by Tony’s family recipe. It is the perfect amount of crunchy and soft with subtle flavor peeking through. The ideal side to your turkey and mashed potatoes.