Is it “stuffing” or “dressing”. Or moreover, is it “stuffing” only when it’s actually being stuffed and dressing when it’s being used to dress? Are stuffing and dressing the same things? And is that “things” or “thing” singular?
Logic dictates there must be an answer to why the same dish has two contrastive names, particularly in the same language. I’m not entirely convinced the answer is relavent but alas this is the inner workings of my brain. My insatiable curiosity to understand the mysteries of life.
Regardless of what it’s called, it’s one of the few dishes I don’t particularly need a holiday to crave or make it. Furthermore it’s a dish I can be blissfully content eating entirely unaccompanied by it’s traditional companions.
Of course not all recipes are the same and the variations alone are as numerous as there are cake recipes. Well perhaps not THAT many but you see my point. There is no wrong way to make stuffing/dressing (whatever you call it. Personally I tend to flip flop between the two.) In the South cornbread stuffing is popular and I’ve seen it mixed with all manner of ingredients from mushrooms to okra; collard greens to corn. I’ve seen turnips, sweet potatoes, carrots, leeks, and red beans to fruits like cranberries, plums, grapes, peaches, pears and apples added to create truly unique flavors.
Personally I’ve used the same recipe for the past six years and have adapted it here and there a little more each year. I think the original came from The Food Network but I’ve long memorized it and don’t have the original to be completely sure of it’s origins. What struck me was the use of sausage and apples, both of which bring me to drooling like a love sick fool on any normal day. Add them to butter & carb laden bread and I’m hopelessly lost.
Besides, with members from each of the food groups respectably representing, it’s practically a balanced meal. One I am happy to indulge in.
I use sage seasoned sausage, apples, dried or fresh cranberries, pecans, red onion, celery, homemade chicken broth (found here) and a plethora of spices to cubed & toasted bread cubes. Add copious amounts of unsalted butter (of course) and stuff, dress, bake, whatever suits your fancy. I tend to make two (three) times more than I need because as I mentioned earlier, I don’t need a holiday to invite an excuse to make it. The stuff freezes like a champ, especially if sealed in airtight, vacuum packed bags. (Seal-a-meal I do not have but bust my boots if those ZipLock air pump bags don’t work like a charm).
What is your favorite recipe or ingredient and for the love of cheese what in the world do you call it?
Stuffing or Dressing? Can’t we just come to a consensus on it and stick with one name? Let’s take a vote, majority rules.
And for the record, I’m all for renaming it something new and entirely unique altogether.
- 8 cups Bread, toasted, spiced and cubed or bagged
- 8 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
- 1 lbs Ground Sage seasoned sausage (more natural the better)
- 1 medium Red onion, diced
- 2 large Apples, (I used Fuji but any will do)
- 3 long Celery stalks, sliced
- ½ cup Pecans, coarsely chopped & lightly toasted
- ½ cup Dried cranberries
- 3 cups Low sodium chicken broth
- ½ cup Fresh parsley, chopped
- ⅛ cup Chives (dried or fresh)
- ¾ teaspoon Sea salt
- ½ tablespoon Ground pepper
- ½ teaspoon Coriander
- Preaheat oven to 350
- Melt two tablespoons of butter in skillet over medium high heat. Add sausage and cook until just barely pink. Break into small bits.
- Pour the sausage into a large bowl with the bread cubes & cranberries and mix with wooden spoon; set aside.
- Return skillet to heat and melt four tablespoons butter.
- Add onions, apples, celery and spices; cook until just tender about five minutes.
- Add broth and parsley and bring to a boil.
- Meanwhile, in a dry skillet or cast iron pan, toast the pecans over medium heat until aromatic. Be careful not to burn them.
- Add pecans to bread and sausage.
- Pour the broth and vegetable mixture into the bread and sausage in one cup increments, mix well. until moistened but not sodden.
- If stuffing a bird, fill cavity loosely and do not pack stuffing, it will expand on cooking.
- Add remaining stuffing to a casserole dish, top with remaining two tablespoons of butter.
- Bake uncovered for 25 to 30 minutes.