I will be doing a full post on Thanksgiving recipes a little closer to the date, but here is the recipe for the dressing I use every year, from Issue #1 of Potluck Mania.
makes 8-10 servings
In the south, we don’t call it “stuffing” unless it’s going to be stuffing something! Otherwise, it’s dressing, and even before I stopped eating meat, I preferred dressing, because dressing usually has much more flavor than the stuffing.
If you’re lucky, your local grocery store or bakery might make bags of stuffing mix with day old bakery bread. If you want to make the bread cubes yourself and your bread isn’t stale enough, just toast the cubes in a 200 degree oven for 10 minutes.
1 lb stale french bread, cut into 1/2″ cubes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup shallots, sliced thinly
1 1/2 cups sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
16 oz mushrooms, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/4 t black pepper
2-3 cups vegetable broth
2 oz or 1/2 cup hazelnuts or chestnuts, chopped
Put the breadcrumbs in a large bowl and set aside.
In a skillet, heat the oil to medium-low. Add the shallot, sweet onion and a pinch of salt, and use a wooden spoon to coat the shallot and onion with the oil, and cook until the onions are a deep golden, 15-18 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. Don’t skimp on the time — be patient and wait until the onions begin to caramelize.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Add the garlic and mushrooms, stir, and saute for a couple of minutes. Crumble in the rosemary and saute for another minute or so. Add the salt, sage, thyme, and pepper, and stir to coat. Turn off the heat or remove the pan from the burner.
Add the onions and mushroom mixture to the bread cubes and mix well. Add the broth one 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well each time. Stop when the broth is fully absorbed and breadcrumbs are plumped up again, usually between 2-3 cups.
Finally, add the nuts, saving them for last so that they don’t get too soft.
Spray a 9×13 dish with olive oil. Transfer the mixture into the dish, cover with foil, and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 5-8 minutes, until the top is a little crispy. Serve warm.