The Kitchen

The 12 Days of Christmas Bake Along, Day 10: New England Holiday Dressing

I couldn’t post this yesterday because I was having complications.  Every once in a while, though thankfully much less often than it used to be, my body reminds me that I have limitations, that I have done too much and need to slow down.  My best friend in the world counseled me, “The most important part about being a domestic goddess is knowing that sometimes life happens and you can’t beat yourself up about it.”  So I gave myself a pass, took some extra fast acting calcium and put my feet up.

Another one of my favorite recipes I learned while living in New England was dressing to accompany the holiday meal.  It is aromatic, flavorful, and unique, highlighting many of the best flavors possible in what is usually portrayed as an overtired, underappreciated side dish.  It’s a nice way to class up the traditional box mix, or you can go all the way and use your own bread crumbs as well.

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You’ll need:

1 medium yellow onion, diced

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 McIntosh apples, diced

1/2 pound chopped carrots

1/2 pound celery

1/4 pound sliced mushrooms

1 pound ground sausage (use your favorite kind– I used sage pork sausage)

2 sticks of butter, cut into cubes

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (be sure to use a lot of the mace also)

1/2 teaspoon cardamom

1/2 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme

1/2 teaspoon freshly chopped rosemary

1/2 teaspoon sage

Olive oil, salt, pepper

6-8 cups of your favorite dried bread crumb blend.  (Depending on time, either go the easy route and use a blend from the store, or whatever you have on hand.)  I used equal amounts of marble rye, pumpernickel, and sourdough breads.

4 cups chicken broth

Directions:  Cook and crumble sausage.  Drain and set aside.  In olive oil, saute all vegetables and fruit until everything is tender but not mushy.  Be sure to season every layer with salt and pepper.  Add seasonings and herbs, add sausage, and mix.  Slice all bread into relatively equal sized cubes.  I did half to three-quarter inch pieces.  It doesn’t have to be precise.  Toss the aromatic blend into the bread crumbs.

Boil chicken broth and butter.  Pour over dressing mixture and fluff with a fork.  Serve immediately.

One thought on “The 12 Days of Christmas Bake Along, Day 10: New England Holiday Dressing

  1. Dressing was always one of those mandatory parts of my family meals as a youngin. This recipe has me excited to take another crack at a proper dressing, one that can hold its own, and eager to see the delighted looks on my families face when they try it!
    Thank you for an easy enough to make dressing , and one that will be complex to the taste buds!

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