fennel, sage and sausage stuffing

Fennel, Sage and Sausage Stuffing

This is my favorite Thanksgiving stuffing.

Sage has long been credited with having healing properties. It was used in antiquity for warding off evil, snakebites and for increasing women’s fertility. The ancient Romans used it as both a diuretic and as a local anesthetic.

16 cups 1-inch bread cubes, white or sourdough
1 stick butter
1 onion, diced
1 fennel, tops removed and diced
3 stalks celery, diced
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
6 to 8 branches fresh sage, leaves picked and coarsely chopped
salt and pepper
¾ pound sausage, casings removed
1 cup chicken stock

Preheat the oven to 300° F. Place the bread cubes in a single layer on a sheet pan and bake for 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and place in a very large bowl. Raise the heat to 350° F.

Meanwhile, in a large pan, melt the butter and add the chopped onions, celery and parsley, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, until the vegetables are softened. Add to the bread cubes and mix well.

In the same pan, cook the sausage over medium heat until browned and cooked through, breaking up the sausage while cooking – about 10 minutes. Add to the bread mixture.

Add the chicken stock to the mixture, mix well, and pour into a 9×12-inch baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes, until browned on top and hot in the middle.

Serves 8 to 10

 

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