11.29.2010

Mom's Stuffing

One of the great things about Thanksgiving is consistency. Every family has those dishes that are served each year and that everyone loves. For me, that dish is my mom's stuffing. Even though I knew I wanted to try some new dishes and really make my Thanksgiving dinner my own, I never even considered trying a different recipe. Why mess with perfection?

Stuffing right after we took it out of the turkey
 Mom's Stuffing
2 loaves of bread (I used whole wheat, she uses white), cubed and left out overnight to dry
1 large celery bunch, chopped, leafy parts reserved
3 tbsps. poultry seasoning
2 tbsps. salt
1 tbsp. pepper
4 sticks butter, sliced into pieces
1 large onion, chopped
1 - 2 cups turkey broth (see below), OR
1 - 2 cups low sodium chicken broth

For bread cubes:
Slice bread into 1/4 cubes (bite-sized) and arrange on a large surface (I used the turkey roasting pan).  Season well with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper; taste and add more if needed. Leave out overnight to dry. Taste again in the morning and add more seasonings if necessary.

To make the turkey broth:
Fill a pot with water and add the turkey neck, gizzards, and leafy celery parts. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer 15 - 20 minutes. Remove from heat.

To make stuffing:
Place all the butter pieces into a frying pan on medium heat to melt completely. Once melted, add celery and onion, and cook until soft, approximately 10 - 15 minutes. Pour mixture over bread cubes and mix well. Slowly add turkey broth or chicken broth, stirring, until the bread is softened. Stuff turkey or chicken if using, and bake any leftover stuffing for 30 - 40 minutes at 350 degrees in a glass dish lightly sprayed with cooking spray.

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