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Stuffing for Turkey picture

Stuffing for Turkey

Stuffing - some people can make a meal out of this simple side dish, and being homemade makes it that much more irresistible.

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Ingredients

  • 1 loaf (about 10 to 12 ounces) day or two old French bread
  • 4 ounces bacon, finely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, dry ends trimmed and finely chopped
  • 2 small Fuji or other crisp, juicy apple, peeled, cored and finely chopped
  • 1 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock

Serves 10 to 12

Note:  All components of the stuffing can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Combine all ingredients together except the chcken stock and store in the refrigerator. Just before stuffing the turkey or baking the stuffing, add the chicken stock and season to taste.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Tear the bread into small pieces and put the pieces in the bowl of a food processor (you may need to work in batches.) Pulse the bread until you have coarse crumbs, no smaller than a pea and preferably slightly larger. Alternatively, cut the bread into small cubes using a serrated knife.
  3. In a large skillet, fry the bacon over medium heat until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.    
  4. Increase the heat to medium high and add the butter to the bacon fat in the skillet. Add the onions and celery and cook, stirring, until golden, 6-8 minutes.
  5. Add the apples, nuts, thyme and sage and cook until the apples soften, about 3-5 minutes. Transfer the apple mixture to the bowl with bacon.
  6. To the bowl also add the bread, cayenne, 1 1/2 cups of the stock and salt and pepper to taste. Toss well. If stuffing seems too dry, add more chicken stock or water.
  7. If stuffing a turkey, place enough stuffing inside the body cavity so that it is 3/4 full.  Butter a 9-inch x 12-inch baking dish and fill it with the stuffing that doesn't fit in the turkey.  
  8. Bake the stuffing in the baking dish for 30 minutes or until it is lightly browned on top.  If you like, once the turkey is cooked, combine the turkey stuffing with the baked stuffing and reheat just before serving.

 

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