Wednesday, December 01, 2010

French Bread And Corn Bread Stuffing/Dressing


I grew up eating StoveTop stuffing. So for the past few Thanksgivings, that's what the hubby and I have made. But this year, with our attempt to eat fewer processed and prepackaged foods, we went the "make it from scratch" route, adapting The Pioneer Woman's Thanksgiving Stuffing recipe. And although we did cheat just a tiny bit and use a box mix for the cornbread I was exceedingly happy with the results.

Makes: One pie pan of stuffing

1/2 loaf crusty French bread
3/4 of an 8" X 8" pan of cornbread
1/4 cup butter
3/4 medium onion
1 cup celery
4 cups low sodium chicken broth
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp thyme
1/8 cup fresh parsley

CUBE French bread into large pieces (~1" cubes)
CRUMBLE corn bread
MIX French bread and corn bread together in an uncovered mixing bowl
LEAVE OUT until French bread is hard and crunchy (~ TWO DAYS)

PREHEAT oven to 350F

DICE onion and celery
CHOP parsley

WARM large skillet over medium heat
ADD butter
HEAT until melted
ADD onion and celery
COOK until onion is translucent

ADD chicken broth
BRING to a boil
ADD basil, thyme, and parsley
STIR until combined

SLOWLY LADLE mixture over bread mixture
STIR after each ladleful to check consistency
SALT to taste while stirring

TRANSFER mixture to a pie plate
BAKE for 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top

My Thoughts
1. If leaving the bread out for several days is not an option for you, set your oven to a low temperature and spread the bread on baking sheets. Bake for 20-30 minutes in the oven to dry out.

2. The boxed cornbread mixture I had was honey cornbread. This gave the whole dish a sweet taste. I didn't mind, but anyone who dislikes sweet and sour type dishes would have found it cloying.

3. The texture of this dish was fabulous. I was a bit worried that my chunks of French bread were going to be too big, but they lent the dish character and were easily cut with the side of a fork or spoon into smaller bits if desired.

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