It’s a little difficult to decide what our favorite Thanksgiving dish is, but make no mistake about it – Turkey Day wouldn’t be the same without stuffing! Stuffing’s texture and taste make it a perfect complement to essential sides like turkey, gravy and cranberry sauce.
But what makes stuffing truly special is its versatility. Below, we’ll enter into the world of stuffing, explore some recipes and get you up to speed on stuffing before the holiday!
While it’s not known when stuffing was first adopted, a Roman cookbook (dated back to the 4th or 5th century A.D.) actually contained recipes for stuffed chicken, hare, pig and dormouse. It’s also claimed that ancient and medieval Roman cooks would actually stuff animals with other animals. Eeek! Since then, stuffing has transformed into a less “carnivorous” dish.
THE VERSATIILITY OF STUFFING
While the modern standard for stuffing (or “dressing” in some parts of the world) is a mix of bread, spices, meat, etc. stuffed into a turkey, there are endless ways to spice up your stuffing. Most people use bread, cornbread or rice as the base of the dish, and after that, it’s truly up to you!
Throw any kind of chicken sausage in to help provide flavor to your base, and then make sure to match up the spices accordingly. Try adding staples like sage, and don’t forget the onion or celery! Whether you choose to cook the stuffing inside your bird or not, stuffing is a creative cook’s dream – and a Turkey Day must!
CORNBREAD SAUSAGE STUFFING
We love this stuffing recipe so much, we just had to share! Featuring all natural chicken sausage and sweet, delicious cornbread as a base, this puts a healthy spin on traditional stuffing while still keeping the deliciousness intact!
1 12oz package al fresco Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage, sliced on bias 1/2'' pieces
12 oz. Cornbread, cut into 1'' cubes and bake in 325 degree oven for 15 minutes to dry out
2 Tbs Canola Oil
1 Cup White Onion, chopped
1 Cup Celery, diced
1 Tbs Fresh Sage, finely chopped
1 Tbs Fresh Thyme, finely chopped
2 Granny Smith Apples washed, cored, diced into 1/2" pieces
2/3 Cup Dried Cranberries
1/4 tsp Black Pepper, ground
1/4 tsp Table Salt
1/2 Cup Chicken Broth, light, fat-free, reduced sodium
Canola Cooking Spray
- Pre-heat oven to 350 °.
- Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat, coat with canola oil.
- Sauté the onions and celery until translucent, 3-5 minutes.
- Add the al fresco Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage, fresh herbs, and the Granny Smith apples, sauté until the sausage is lightly browned, 3-5 minutes.
- Add the dried cranberries, salt, pepper, and chicken broth.
- Stir until the seasonings are incorporated.
- Add the cornbread cubes and toss until evenly combined.
- Transfer to a 12" casserole dish (coated with cooking spray).
- Bake covered for 15-20 minutes until thoroughly heated.
- Ideal with poultry dishes; serve with roasted turkey or chicken.