Thursday, November 26, 2009

Sausage Stuffing

When I was a super sophmore in community college I asked my journalism professor to recommend some Cal State schools that had good journalism programs and were far away from home. He named Cal State Northridge, Cal State Long Beach, and San Francisco State; I immediately settled on SFSU because it was the furthest from home.

Once the holiday season rolled around, my parents wanted me to come home for Thanksgiving, but I did not want to make the long drive home, so I opted to visit a friend in Santa Cruz instead. Well, it's a good thing I didn't try driving home to my parent's house; my car wound up breaking down on a narrow windy road in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Thankfully, I had AAA at the time, so I called them for a tow, packed up my pumpkin pie, and was towed back to my friend's house in San Jose.

That was one the the best Thanksgivings ever. And my friend's mom made the best stuffing ever, filled with chunks of browned sausage.

Sausage Stuffing
Printable Recipe
Source: my friend's mom

1 pound raw sausage, casings removed (I use turkey sausge)
a bunch of bread
4 ribs celery, chopped
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, diced
1 stick of butter
4 cups chicken broth
a palm-full of chopped fresh sage
1-2 tablespoons dried sage
a palm-full of chopped fresh oregano
1-2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
2 teaspoons pepper
a sprinkling of garlic salt

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, tear apart the bread into chunks. I used about 2 to 2 1/2 loaves of French bread. Stale bread works best, and don't be afraid to mix it up. I used a few pieces of chili-fleck sourdough bread, a chunk of whole wheat bread, a large loaf of French bread, and a long skinny baguette.

Cook the sausage on the stovetop, using a wooden spoon to break it into chunks. Once it is browned and cooked all the way through, add it to the bread.

In the same pan used to brown the meat, sautee the onion, celery, and garlic with the butter. Cook until soft and fragrant. Add it to the bread and meat mixture.

Season with all the seasonings and herbs. Use your hands to throughly mix everything together.

Move the stuffing into a greased 9 x 13" casserole dish. Pour the brother over the top. Turn the stuffing over a few times to ensure that it is well mixed.

Bake for about 35-45 minutes.

Note: I make this the night before Thanksgiving, so all I have to do is pop it into the oven for a few minutes and re-heat on the big day.

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