Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Dressing or Stuffing? Cornbread or Bread? Everyone has a different recipe or style and nothing will divide cooks quicker! We never stuffed our turkey and always had Cornbread Dressing. Mom would also make a pan of plain Bread Dressing for Daddy because it was his Mother's recipe. Daddy never knew that Mom snuck a little cornbread into that pan of bread dressing. And, of course, a little white bread went into her cornbread dressing.
We measured everything by the bowl size. Last year I carefully measured everything out so that I could be completely accurate with Mom's recipe. I always add the eggs last - after I've tasted the dressing for proper seasoning. I'm giving you a minimum measurement on the seasonings. Add them to your dressing, taste it, and add a little more of this and that. Some people like a little more sage. If it seems dry, add more broth. If it seems too moist, add more bread or cornbread. Mom and I would add a little of everything until the dressing was 'just right'. Keep in mind that you don't want to 'over season'. Once the dressing is cooked, the flavors will become richer, so keep this in mind. Happy Cooking!
8 to 10 cups of cornbread, crumbled
2 to 4 cups of white bread, slightly stale and broken into small pieces
1 cup diced celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 & 1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
2 tablespoons rubbed sage (use less if ground sage)
2 to 4 cups broth (ideally a mixture of chicken broth and turkey broth)
2 sticks butter (1 cup)
2 beaten eggs
In a large saucepan, combine chicken broth, turkey neck (or use chicken thighs), enough water to cover, and butter. Bring to a boil and simmer for one hour. In a large bowl, crumble cornbread and bread together. Add celery, onion, and seasonings. Mix well. Remove turkey/chicken from the broth and set aside. Add broth a cup or two at a time until you reach the desired consistency, mixing well after each addition. Keep in mind the dressing will 'set' as it cooks. Taste and add more seasoning as desired. Then add eggs and stir well. Pour into 9x13 Pyrex dish and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until golden brown on top. This recipe actually makes a little more than will fit into a 9x13 pan, so you can also bake a smaller dish along side the bigger one. I like to take the chicken cooked for the broth, remove the skin and bones, and add it to the leftover dressing. Then bake it in a casserole dish along side your cornbread dressing. This will make a great leftover casserole that can quickly be re-heated the next day.