Bread stuffing is the most versatile type of stuffing you can make. You can add pretty much any seasonings, nuts and fruits to create a flavor that is uniquely your own. The addition of mild Italian sausage and pine nuts makes this stuffing truly exceptional.
2 loaves Artisan or white bread, cubed
1 to 2 cups chicken stock
1 onion, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
2 cups mild Italian sausage meat
5 sprigs thyme
1/4 cup butter
2 cups pine nuts, toasted
1/4 cup sage leaves, chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 turkey liver, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
Cut the bread into 1” cubes. Spread the cubed bread onto a baking sheet, cover with a towel and allow to room dry for 2 to 3 days. If you want to speed up the process, preheat your oven to 200°F and bake for 30 to 40 minutes until dry.
Pan fry turkey livers (from the turkey) in olive oil for 3 minutes, turning once. Remove from the heat and chop finely. Set aside.
Cook the onion, shallot, and thyme sprigs in the butter for 5 minutes until translucent. Remove the thyme stocks (the leaves should have fallen off during the cooking process). Add the sausage meat and cook through thoroughly (approximately 10 to 12 minutes). Add the sausage mixture to the bread cubes.
In a dry pan, toast the pine nuts for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly (they will burn quite quickly). Add to the bread mixture. Add the cranberries, chopped sage, salt, and cooked liver. Toss all the ingredients and add the chicken stock one half cup at a time to just moisten the bread.
Note: If you are baking the stuffing on its own (outside a bird), you will need additional stock and 6 tablespoons butter cut into small pieces on the top.
Makes 12 cups stuffing.