With thanksgiving at hand there are so many fantastic things to put on your table. While the turkey will always be the main attraction, the sides leave so much room to shine on their own. We thought we would share what’s become a favorite of ours. Our cornbread stuffing is loaded with sausage, sautéed vegetables and fresh herbs. What really sets it apart is how easy the preparation is.
There are so many things to cook and keep track of on thanksgiving day. The best plan is to prepare as many things as possible ahead of time. This recipe lets you do most of the legwork the day or two before, so all you need to worry about before serving is putting the dish in the oven.
Start by removing the casings from 2 Italian sausages, we like to use chicken or turkey sausage for ours, but you can pick whatever you like. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and add the sausage meat. Cook the sausage, breaking up the meat into small pieces. When it’s browned and cooked through, removed the meat to a paper towel lined plate to cool. Wipe out any excess fat from the pan with a paper towel.
While the sausage is cooking it’s time to prep the carrots, celery, and onion. Simply chop all the vegetables into small pieces, and portion out about a cup of each. That’s usually a medium sized onion, 2-3 carrots and 2-3 stalks of celery.
When your vegetables are ready and your meat done, add another tablespoon of oil to the same pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add all of the vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Add half a bunch of fresh Sage leaves, chopped. Cook until soft, this will take about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes. Once they’re done, set them bowl to cool.
Everything up to now can easily be done 1-2 days ahead of time. Just combine the cooled sausage and vegetables, cover them and leave them in the fridge until you’re ready. When it’s time to finish the dish, crumble 4 large cornbread muffins into a large bowl. Add the cooled sausage and vegetables and combine. Then add 3 large eggs and 1/4 cup of chicken stock. Using your hands, mix everything together. Be gentle, don’t break up all the bits of cornbread, having some chunks will give a nice touch to the finished dish. If it’s still a bit too dry you can add a little more stock.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 2 Quart baking dish with cooking spray. Put the stuffing into the dish and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the top is browned and crispy.
- 2 Italian sausages
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 cup chopped carrot
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 bunch fresh Sage, leaves chopped
- 4 large cornbread muffins
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup chicken stock, plus more if needed
- Nonstick cooking spray
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Recipe courtesy of George Duran and Food Network World’s best cornbread stuffing