Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Thanksgiving Recipes: Jenn's Apple Sausage Stuffing

My favorite part of Thanksgiving is the stuffing. My VERY FAVORITE! I think it's made more special by the fact that I don't make it most of the year, but man - I really need to make it more often!

I love this recipe so much, not only because it's so delicious, but because it's a combination of recipes I've adapted from over the years. My mother in law taught me how to make stuffing (previously I used Stove Top!) and what to put in it, and for years I followed what she taught me. My Dad started cooking a second Thanksgiving shortly after the actual holiday so that my sister and I (and our families) could celebrate with him - we typically have dinner with my mom on the actual holiday. He likes to get creative when he cooks, and Thanksgiving is no exception! He used to make us guess what he put in his stuffing, and there were always interesting and unexpected things in there!

That was my inspiration to add in other ingredients, and I started playing with using apple and pear chunks. Both of them are delicious additions, but since I usually have spare apples around, my recipe has become Apple Sausage Stuffing. You will love this stuff!

Jenn's Apple Sausage Stuffing

3-4 Stalks Celery
1/2 Medium Onion
1 Small-Med Apple
Sage Sausage (in a tube)
Stuffing Mix (I use Pepperidge Farm Herb Stuffing Mix )
2 Cans Chicken Stock
Poultry Seasoning

1. Squeeze half the tube (sounds delicious) of sausage into a shallow pan and cook like you would ground meat for tacos. Chop into small pieces as you brown it. When fully cooked, pour onto a plate lined with a paper towel and set aside.

2. Finely dice celery and cook in the same pan with some butter or olive oil. I splurge on Thanksgiving and use butter for this!

3. When the celery starts to soften, finely chop onion and add to the pan. Let them sweat out a bit until they are translucent.

4. Peel and chop the apple into small cubes and add to the pan. Only cook them long enough to soften just a little - just until they lose their crunch.

5. When everything has softened, put all of the cooked ingredients into a large mixing bowl, including the sausage crumbles. Season with some poultry seasoning and stir. Add in the package of stuffing mix and combine everything.

6. Using about 2 cans of chicken stock (depending on how wet or dry you like your stuffing - make it a little wetter than you think as it will dry a bit when cooking), mix everything together.

7. Spread the stuffing into a baking dish (I usually use a 9x13 pan), and sprinkle the surface with poultry seasoning.

8. Cook in the oven (at whatever temp you're cooking everything else) for 30 minutes, or until warm and the surface has gotten a little crunchy.

PS - you can do steps 1-7 early and set aside to bake later. It's a good one to make ahead if you're balancing your cooking time!

This stuffing gets comments from everyone every year! It's not a bad idea to make extra - leftovers are soooo gooooood!

Thanksgiving Recipes

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