THE Best Stuffing, Dressing, whatever the hell you wanna call it!

You can’t have a holiday party, may it be Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s without Stuffing! The perfect stuffing for me has to have a little crunch (pecans), a little sweet (corn bread), a little fruit (apples, I sometimes use dried cranberries), and a whole lota rich and savory (sausage, fennel, onions, wine, etc).

I usually exclusively use cornbread when making stuffing, but this time I decided to kick things up a notch by adding garlic ciabatta bread and an everything spice topped Italian loaf. Lets just say it was a fantastic decision.

Other ingredients that I switched things up with was the fruit element, I used apples instead of cranberries and the sausage, breakfast in place of spicy Italian. The ingredient list is long but I promise its totally worth it!

One thing to note! The pictures used were from tripling this recipe to make enough stuffing for 30+ people. So disregard the portions in the pictures. The recipe that follows has approx. 8 servings.

Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

First things first! Toast the bread! I tried to keep everybody the same size.

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Now for the meat. Make sure to remove the casing and break apart while it browns in the pan.

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Once cooked, set it aside until you’re ready to mix everything together.

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Veggie time!

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Save any left over fat from the sausage to cook the veggies in for extra flavor!

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Add, the garlic, sage, thyme and apples once the veggies are soft.

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Don’t forget your salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes.

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Almost done!

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A little wine never hurt nobody! Cook till the wine has almost completely evaporated.

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Transfer to a bowl and mix in the parsley.

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Beat the eggs and add the broth/stock to it.

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Now add everything else! Starting with the pecans, meat, and bread, followed by slowing adding the egg stock mixture, one cup at a time. You have to be as gentle as you can in order to avoid everything turning into mush. Transfer to a buttered pan.

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Now for the brown butter topping! Melt butter on low until nice and golden brown.

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Pour the browned butter all over the top followed by a couple dots of butter. Pop him in the oven at 400 for about 50-60 minutes until golden brown.

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I was in a hurry to get to the party that I made this stuffing for so I didn’t take a pic until I got there. As you can tell the lighting and focus was terrible so you don’t get to see my baby’s true beauty. Ah well!

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Multiple Bread, Fennel, Apple, Sausage Stuffing

Serves 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups ½” cubes prepared cornbread
  • 3 cups ½” cubes Ciabatta loaf
  • 3 cups ½” cubes Italian loaf
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 pound breakfast sausage (casings removed)
  • 1 small fennel bulb, chopped, plus fronds for serving
  • 1 medium onion chopped (white, spanish or yellow, doesn’t really matter)
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 large golden delicious apple, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped sage
  • 1 tbsp chopped thyme
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2½ cups chicken stock or broth
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • ½ tsp Red pepper flakes
  • Salt and Black Pepper
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 300°. Divide cornbread, ciabatta and italian loaf between 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Bake, tossing occasionally, until beginning to brown and feels dried out, about 30–40 minutes.

While the bread dries out, cook the sausage. Place sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat, crumbling with a spoon. Cook for 7–10 minutes until browned. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to a small bowl.

Reduce heat to medium and add 4 Tbsp. butter to the same skillet. Add fennel, celery and onions. Cook until veggies are tender, about 10-15 minutes. Add apples, garlic, sage, thyme, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and black pepper. Increase heat to medium-high and add wine, cook, stirring occasionally, until wine is almost completely evaporated, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and mix in parsley. 

Increase oven temperature to 400°. Beat eggs and add broth/stock. Combine sausage, veggie mixture, pecans and bread. Slowly incorporate egg broth mixture, 1 cup at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Bread should be moist, not soggy so mix gently. Let sit 10 minutes.

While the stuffing sits, add 3 Tbsp. butter to small skillet over medium heat until bubbly and brown. About 5-10 mins. Transfer stuffing mixture to a prepared baking dish and pour browned butter all over the top followed by dotting with remaining 1 Tbsp. butter.

Cover stuffing with foil and bake for about 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake until golden and crisp on top, 20–30 minutes longer.

Top with fennel fronds and serve!

 

 

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