Stuff It!

(I mean that in the nicest way possible – it is not recommended that you say this to the airport security guard when he requests permission to pat you down)…

It’s all my friend Todd‘s fault…he posted this recipe for Cranberry Chutney yesterday.  Then my friend Maura posted her Sweet Potato Casserole recipe.  Since I’ve been making holiday dinners (from scratch) for the last 30 years (yes, children…it’s really true!), I thought I might as well offer my contribution, even though we celebrated our Canadian Thanksgiving last month.

My recipe is for those of you who claim not to be able to cook, and sadly, resort to preparing boxed stuffing mix for turkey dinners…this is easy to make, and tastes infinitely better!  There are no strict measurements in the recipe…as long as you don’t decide to, say, dump in 1/2 cup of sage (instead of a teaspoon or so), you’re good!

Wendy’s Homemade Stuffing

8 to 16 slices of your favourite bread (multiple kinds is fun – vary amount according to size of turkey, or how much you love stuffing), cubed with a sharp knife

1 or 2 medium onions, minced

3 to 5 stalks celery, minced (use leaves for extra flavour, if desired)

2 to 3 large eggs

1 or 2 large chicken bouillon cubes (I use the 1″ square ones x 1/2″ thick), grated

Sage, thyme, rosemary, parsley, poultry seasoning, cinnamon, salt and pepper to taste (use pinches!)

A handful or two of raisins, soaked in water until plump (if desired)

An apple or two, peeled, cored and cut into small pieces (if desired) 

Mix above ingredients together in a massive mixing bowl.  Stuff as much of the mixture as you can into turkey or chicken cavity…I use toothpicks to hold the openings closed.  Roast the bird as usual.  There are two ways you can cook the rest of the stuffing (refrigerate it until it’s time to cook – food poisoning on Thanksgiving would definitely ruin your guests’ holiday!): I usually steam it in the top of my pan while I’m cooking the potatoes, or it can be placed into a greased casserole and cooked in the oven along with the bird for the last 45 minutes of cooking.  When the bird is done, scoop the stuffing out of it, and mix it with the “unstuffed” stuffing in a serving dish…the flavours will blend together, and no one will suspect it wasn’t all cooked in the bird!

This pan is similar to the one I use to cook the potatoes/stuffing in...

I wish I could be with my American relatives and have another Thankgiving dinner with them this year…

I’ll leave you with this anecdote from a holiday dinner at my Aunt Judy’s sometime in the early 1980’s: My Great Uncle Gene passed the vegetables to his wife and asked, in his typical deadpan way, “Do you want a pea, Helen?”

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!



Filed under cooking, family, food

31 responses to “Stuff It!

  1. This stuffing recipe looks good. I’m packed and ready to leave for the airport, but maybe I’ll print this out… Have a great holiday!

  2. You’re so impressive, Wendy! A friend’s son was once absolutely amazed when he saw someone making chips (French fries) from POTATOES! We’re such a fast food world, aren’t we?
    Love the holiday dinner comment!
    Sunshine xx

  3. Yum, Wendy. Good stuffing is hard to beat. I’m going to save this and pull it out when I make Christmas dinner this year. Thanks for the post! (And thanks for the link-up!)

  4. Super impressive, Wendy, 30 years from scratch! I defer the stuffing making to my mother, but I’m going to keep your recipe tucked in my nice little recipe box for future reference. Thanks for sharing, Diane

    • Hi Diane: I basically took my mom’s stuffing recipe and refined it a bit…I’ve been forced to learn how to cook my own dinners all this time because I’ve always lived far away from the rest of my relatives! Now that we live close to Jim’s parents, we eat at their place one day and at ours the next (or vice versa) for holidays…BONUS! Hugs, Wendy

  5. Stop, you’re making me homesick 🙂

  6. planejaner

    yum yum yum…let the nom nom nom begin…

  7. My mom’s stuffing recipe is my absolute favorite. I’ll have it tomorrow when she makes it and then I’ll make it again for Christmas. I can’t wait!

    Hope you have a lovely non-holiday tomorrow!

  8. Nice recipe.
    I find apricots are a good ingredient for turkey stuffing

  9. mairzeebp

    I’ve never made homemade stuffing. Honestly, I have barely made a homemade anything but I think I may give your recipe a whirl. I thank you and my stomach will thank you too :).

  10. Wish I’d seen this before Thanksgiving. I’ll have to remember it come Christmas!

  11. The only turkeys I have are of the virtual kind…thanks to my Farmville obsession 😛 But I could try it with a large chicken perhaps, adjusting the quantities? Can you believe I’ve never roasted a chicken? Ever! Love the camouflage tip about cooking some of the stuffing separately…very neat 🙂

    I seem to have missed your Thanksgiving, but better than late than never…Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family Wendy! As for me, I’m very thankful to have you as my friend 🙂

    Hugs, H.

    • The recipe can definitely be used for chicken, Harsha…just use the smaller quantities. The key to cooking whole chickens or turkeys is to keep the moisture on…I line my pan with foil, and make a tent-like structure over the bird (seal the moisture in). In the last half hour of cooking, open up the foil so that the bird can brown. Cook the bird at 350 degrees F. for about a half hour per lb. I’m thankful to have found you too, Harsha! Wendy

  12. Hippie Cahier

    It wouldn’t be a holiday dinner without an Uncle Gene. 🙂

  13. Seems as though there are hundreds of recipes for stuffing, each one slightly different. For us it was always mashed potatoes, bread crumbs, onions, summer savory, salt and pepper.

  14. Thank you for pointing me here! I actually have ALL the ingredients in my pantry right now, including something called Sage. LOL. I may have to give it a try this week just so I can get rid of the extra bag of bread crumb thingy I got for Thanksgiving.

    p.s. The vegetarian one I made (per my MIL’s request) was soggy and disgusting imo… I prefer drier stuffing.

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