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Rudi’s Recipes: Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing

The cornbread stuffing is cooked in a separate pan, for convenience and to ensure a safe and fully cooked temperature. If you don’t like cornbread stuffing, this one will taste just as terrific made with cubes of dense white bread. Allow the bread to sit out overnight to go stale, or dry out the cubes in a 250 degree F oven for 40 minutes. — Rudi Sodamin

CORNBREAD AND SAUSAGE STUFFING

Yield:
12 servings

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup port
1/4 cup B&B liqueur or brandy
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
2 cups finely diced yellow onion
2 cups finely diced celery
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoons chopped fresh sage or 1.5 teaspoons dried sage
1 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary or 1.5 teaspoons dried rosemary
6 cups cornbread crumbs
1.5 cups canned or roasted (and peeled) chestnuts
1 cup finely diced Granny Smith apple
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups low-sodium store-bought chicken broth or stock, or homemade

DIRECTIONS:
1. At least 2 hours before you make the stuffing, combine the raisins, port, and B&B in a small bowl and let them soak. (You can leave the raisins soaking overnight, if you like.)

2. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F, or plan to put the stuffing in the oven with the turkey about 2 hours* into the turkey’s baking time.

3. In a large sauté pan, brown the sausage over medium-high heat. Drain off any excess fat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until softened and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the celery and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the thyme, sage, and rosemary and transfer the mixture to a large bowl.

4. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and stir until well combined. Pour the stuffing into the prepared baking dish and cover it with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 15 minutes more, or until the top is golden brown.

* the “2 hours into the turkey’s baking time” estimate is based on using the accompanying Turkey recipe from A Taste of Celebration. Timing may vary if you are using a different recipe or different sized turkey.

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