Thanksgiving feast

Successfully came through my Thanksgiving dinner. The last few years I’ve been winging it with my stuffing and the results have been mixed to put it kindly. This year I turned to a great basic stuffing recipe from Saveur that was full of fresh herbs, celery, onions, dried bread cubes, stock and eggs. I added mushrooms and homemade sausage and baked for fourty five minutes: the end product was excellent. I also made Parker House rolls from a Cooks Illustrated recipe but let the buns do their final rise in nine inch round cake pans so they baked together and the sides were soft. These rolls are known for their buttery flavour and were the biggest hit at the dinner table. My final change came by way of the barbeque: I cooked my turkey on the Big Green Egg. With indirect heat and a drip pan it really turned out well: juicy, tender and a little smokey. This also left my oven free for the other dishes.

Mushroom Stuffing

  • 1 loaf bread
  • 2 tbs fresh savory, finely chopped
  • 2 tbs fresh marjoram, finely chopped
  • 2 tbs fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 2 tbs fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 12 tbs salted butter
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 4 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 2 cups turkey or chicken stock
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 tsp freshly cracked pepper

Use whatever type of bread you’d like: I used a white sandwich loaf.  Slice the loaf of bread into 1/2 to 3/4 inch slices and leave out to dry for two days or put in a 200 degree F oven for 30-40 minutes.  Once dry cut into 1 inch cubes: this should yield about twelve cups of dried cubes.

Heat a skillet on medium and add 8 tbs butter until it melts.  Then add the celery and onion, cooking until softened, about 8 minutes.  Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until softened, about 4 minutes.

Mix the bread cubes, vegetables and herbs in a large bowl.  Add the stock, eggs and pepper and mix throughly.  Pour mixture into a buttered casserole dish and dot the top with the remaining butter.  Cover with buttered aluminum foil.

Bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees F and then remove the aluminum foil and continue to bake until the top gets nicely toasted and crunchy, 30-45 minutes.