Thursday, November 8, 2012

Recipe of the Week: Thanksgiving Favorites - Stuffing or Dressing?!

Last week, I shared with you a wonderful potato dish and this week...we tackle stuffing or as they call it in the south, dressing.

Do you know the history of the two?

It is not known when stuffings were first used. The earliest documentary evidence is the Roman Cookbook, Apicus De Re Coquinaria, which contains recipes for stuffed chicken, hare, and pig.  Most of the stuffings described consist of vegetables, herbs and spices and some contained spelt (an old cereal).  Frequently they contain chopped liver, brains and other organ meats.  
Names for stuffing include 'farce' (~1390), 'stuffing' (1538), 'forcemeat' (1688), and 'dressing'.  After 1880, it seems the term stuffing did not appeal to the propriety of the Victorian upper crust, who began referring to it as dressing.  Nowadays, the terms stuffing and dressing are used interchangeably, with stuffing being the term of preference in the South and East portions of the United States.

Whatever you call it in your home....enjoy!


Classic Thanksgiving Stuffing 

2 cups day-old breadcrumbs (use stale bread cut into 1 inch pieces)
2 cups crumbled cornbread muffins
2 cups crumbled biscuits (find some pre-packaged biscuits and let sit out over night)
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1/4 cup chopped parsley
sage, salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup melted butter
1 egg, beaten
1-2 cups chicken broth (I use fresh giblet juice from my turkey innards)

Preheat oven to 375.  In a very large mixing bowl (I use my turkey roasting pan), combine bread crumbs, cornbread, biscuits, onion, celery, green onions and parsley.  Season with spices (I like to taste it once it is all mixed together).  

Add butter, egg and begin adding broth 1/2 cup at a time.  Begin to mix together (add enough broth to make it moist but not too much or your stuffing will be soggy).  Make sure it is adequately seasoned before placing in well greased baking dish.  

Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour or until golden brown.  

Note:  This can be made one day ahead.  Please let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.  This recipe makes 8 (1/2) cup servings