Monday, December 18, 2006

Turkey Tip #4 - Easy Cornbread Stuffing

One week and it will all be over! Are you all ready? Don't panic. I'm still making gifts, the house isn't decorated or even clean yet and I do this as a living! By this time next week, it won't matter and all that will be left will be the relaxing, eating, drinking and spending time with family and friends. You know, the stuff that really matters! But before then, let's see if we can share a few more tips for a great Christmas dinner.

This is less about the turkey and more about the stuffing. I have posted my super easy cornbread stuffing before but it deserves a repeat. There are lots of fancy stuffing out there but this is simple and tastes delicious. As I mentioned earlier, I don't stuff mine in the bird, I cook it separately making it dressing, not stuffing. It just means the bird cooks a little quicker with less time to dry out. You can do it either way, it's up to you.

All I do for my cornbread stuffing is make some store bought packages of cornbread up ahead of time. I leave them uncovered on the counter to help them dry out a bit. If you can get store made cornbread or the cornbread bread cubes, go ahead. Just don't get the cornbread cubes already seasoned for stuffing. It will have tons of salt and it's better to season it yourself.

Break up the cornbread in a bowl. Toss in a finely chopped onion and some dried herbs. I use about 1 tbsp per package of cornbread mix or if you get the bag of cornbread cubes, use about 1/4 cup of dried herbs. You can use fresh herbs if you like but it isn't necessary. I use rosemary, thyme and sage or poultry seasoning. Melt some butter in the microwave. I usually start with about 2 tbsp. Add to the stuffing mix until you can get a bit to form a loss ball in your hand. Keep adding until you get this consistency.

I'll add the dish into the oven about an hour before the turkey is done. If I have to wait until the turkey is finished before putting the dish in the oven then I usually only need to cook it about 45 minutes if it's a big dish. Use a long flat pan like a lasagna dish if you are putting it in after, it will cook quicker. Remember to put some turkey drippings in the dish. I use my baster or a spoon and take some of the drippings out of the pan and drizzle them on the stuffing dish. Perfect.

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