Following up from Friday’s post about loving cooking and making homemade stuffing for my family, I thought I’d share how I made it. So, I spent a few days researching various recipes and watching a few how-to videos to see what the common strategies were and such for making a yummy homemade stuffing.
Here’s how I did it and obviously, you can tinker to your own liking.
Classic Homemade Stuffing for Thanksgiving
I bought the following:
- One loaf of French bread (only $1.50!).
- A pack of four (salted, but you can always get unsalted) butter sticks.
- One large sweet onion or yellow onion. A lot of recipes call for two whole onions, but that’s a lot!
- A stock (is that the word?) of fresh celery.
- Fresh garlic clove.
- Chicken broth (the vegetarians/vegans can use vegetable broth, I believe). Turkey broth would also work here.
- Poultry seasoning.
- I didn’t have a 9×13 baking dish, so I bought one of those foil ones the grocery store has. It worked well enough for this recipe.
- Sweet Italian sausage links (I saw a recipe call for Italian sausage and I thought that sounded fun, but I didn’t realize it was ground Italian sausage, so I’m an idiot, but I’m glad I didn’t end up including this. That said, if you actually buy the ground version, I’m sure that would add some extra flavor to your stuffing!).
Overall, I think I spent about $20-ish, and if I would’ve had to buy the eggs, another dollar or so, but minus the sausage, I’d be under $20. Not too bad at all! Even with the inflation worries, ha.
Things I already had:
- Eggs (some recipes don’t even call for this).
- Various seasonings, including salt, black pepper, Italian seasoning and garlic powder.
First, you need to prepare your bread. Unfortunately, I do not have a nice bread cutting knife, so that was a bit laborious for me. Nonetheless, I just cut the loaf in half and then using one half, kept making slices and then cutting those slices down into smaller pieces. Some actually have that nice cubed look and others are just small pieces. I don’t care about aesthetics much! I ended up adding maybe another inch or two of the loaf, but I didn’t use the whole thing.
Add the bread pieces to a baking sheet and put in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes to dry out the bread. That’s how you get that croutons texture.
While that’s happening, you can begin preparing your vegetables and hopefully you’re better at it than I am. I still struggle mightily with slicing an onion and mincing garlic. But yeah, do that! As well as cutting up one of the celery pieces from the stock.
I added a full butter stick to a pan on medium heat to sauté the aforementioned vegetables. It’ll probably take about 10 minutes. What you’re looking for is the vegetables to get soft. So, stir occasionally.
Add your seasonings to the vegetables: Garlic powder (I probably didn’t need to do this since I had fresh garlic, but who doesn’t love that garlic taste?), salt, black pepper, Italian seasoning and poultry seasoning.
When the bread seems done (don’t over-brown them!), transfer the pieces to a large bowl. Mix in the sautéed vegetables when they are done. Stir and make sure the bread is soaking up those vegetable juices and butter.
Add in one cup of your broth to the bowl. Mix well.
In another, smaller bowl, mix one cup of broth with an egg. Then add that mixture to the bowl. Mix well.
At this point, I believe I added just a touch more of black pepper to the bowl.
Spray or grease your 9×13 dish.
Spread out the bowl mixture across the dish to give it an even spread.
I then took a few sliced chunks of butter from the butter sticks and placed a chunk at each corner of the pan and then in the middle.
Cover the top with aluminum foil.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 40 minutes.
While it’s baking, clean! The last thing you want to worry about is those dishes, so just get it over with!
Remove from the oven and remove the aluminum foil.
Bake for an additional 40 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. You’re looking for that golden brown, crispiness on the top.
Ready to serve!
Now, if you do it like I did and bake it in advance the night before, what you want to do is re-cover the top with aluminum foil and place it in the refrigerator. When you’re ready to actually serve it, bring it out of the refrigerator and add some more chicken broth (or I actually used turkey juice because we had a turkey available) to the top just to make sure it’s still moist, and cover again with aluminum foil and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30-ish minutes. Remove, uncover and bake for an additional 20-ish minutes.
I think my family enjoyed it, and for my own tastes, I liked it a lot! I hope you and your family will, too, if you decide to try it homemade.