Big Joe’s Big Stuffing [Recipe]
I have a tremendous respect for stuffing. Thanksgiving time is really the only time that most of us make homemade stuffing. I’m real big into having the stuffing taste great with lots of moisture.
Dry stuffing could put a damper on your meal. While you could certainly prepare this dish the morning of Thanksgiving, if you’re under time restraints you could make it the day before and the flavors will really meld well into the stuffing. If you make it the day before, add more chicken stock, because the refrigeration will dry it out more than usual and wrap it very tight before storing the night before.
This recipe is enough stuffing for a large turkey, 16 – 20 pounds, and enough for a pan for the table (about 8 - 10 people). Just a note, remember that when you stuff a turkey your cooking time for the bird is increased and don’t pack it in, the loser the stuffing in the bird, the better the juices. I like to start with Pepperidge Farm Herb "cubed" Stuffing Mix as a base for this tasty stuffing
2 - 3 packages – Pepperidge Farm Herb Flavored Stuffing Mix Cubed
2 tubes – Jimmy Dean sausage (I like one tube spicy and one tube mild and mix)
4 cans – low salt chicken broth
1 package – button mushrooms cleaned sliced
2 medium onions, chopped
4 to 6 stalks celery, chopped
¾ cup – Apple Cider
1 teaspoon each of Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme, yeah just like the song!
2 cloves of garlic minced
1 ½ sticks of butter
Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
Aluminum casserole pan
How to put it together:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a big pot over med-high heat start cooking the sausage breaking it up with wooden spoon. Add garlic, butter, spices let cook until sausage is almost completely cooked add celery, onion continue to sauté, and then add mushrooms, sauté for three to four minutes.
Add chicken both, increase heat under pot until mixture has a slow boil, add apple cider. Mix in Pepperidge Farm Stuffing turn off heat under pot. Mix thoroughly and let sit for 1 hour (I like to let it sit longer in covered pot because all the flavors marry well into the stuffing; you.
Loosely stuff the bird right before putting it in the oven, bake the remainder of stuffing in an aluminum pan for about 30-45 minutes at 350 degrees and Enjoy!
NOTE: I don't use water to mix the stuffing although the recipe on the Pepperidge Farm stuffing bags call for it. I substitute with chicken broth.