Sausage, Cranberry, Pecan Stuffing
- 8 Cups (1/2") Pieces Firm White Bread (3/4 lb)
- 1 1/2 lb Fresh Pork Sausage Meat - Crumbled
- 1/2 Stick (1/4 Cup) Unsalted Butter
- 2 Onions - Chopped
- 3 Celery Ribs - Sliced 1/4" Thick
- 1 Granny Smith Apple - Peeled and Cut Into 1/2" Pieces
- 2 Tsp Minced Garlic
- 1 1/2 Cups Chopped Pecans (8 oz) - Toasted
- 1 Cup Dried Cranberries
- 1 Tbs Chopped Fresh Sage
- 1 to 1 1/2 Cups Chicken Broth
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Toast bread in a large shallow baking pan in middle of oven until dry and pale golden, about 20 minutes.
- Cook sausage in a large heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring and breaking up large lumps, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes, then transfer with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.
- Add butter to fat remaining in skillet and cook onions, stirring, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add celery, apple, and garlic and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl with sausage and stir in bread, pecans, cranberries, sage, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer stuffing to a buttered 3- to 4-quart shallow baking dish and drizzle with broth. (Use 1 1/2 cups broth if you like a moist stuffing, 1 cup if you prefer it drier.) Cover with foil and bake in middle of oven 30 minutes, then uncover and bake until bread is golden and stuffing is heated through, 20 to 25 minutes more.
- Stuffing can be assembled (but not baked), without nuts, 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Toss in pecans and bring to room temperature before baking.
Makes about 12 cups.
Gourmet (November 2000)