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Sausage and French bread stuffing

November 18, 2009

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Serves 8

Hi-Rise Bread Co. owner Rene Becker uses a combination of his own crusty bread along with challah and something he calls corn bread, which is made from a yeast dough. The coarser the bread, says the Cambridge bakery owner, the lighter the stuffing. He doesn’t like sourdough bread for this and advises toasting the bread very lightly, so it’s firm but not brown.

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut up
1 pound bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 Spanish onion, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 pound pork sausage or chicken sausage, pricked well all over
4 tart apples (such as Jonagold or Mutsu), peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch dice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Use 1 tablespoon of the butter to butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

2. On a rimmed baking sheet, lay the bread cubes. Toast them in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, turning often, until they are firm but not browned. Transfer to a large bowl.

3. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the butter. Cook the onion and celery, stirring often, for 8 minutes or until softened. Scrape the onion mixture into the bread cubes.

4. Add the olive oil to the skillet and heat until hot. Brown the sausage, stirring often, for 4 minutes or until it is cooked through. Remove from the pan; set aside.

5. Add the apples to the skillet. Cook for 2 minutes without browning. Add to the bread cubes.

6. When the sausage is cool enough to handle, remove it from the casing and cut into 1-inch pieces. Add the sausage mixture to the bread. Add the parsley and sage. Toss with your hands.

7. In a smaller bowl, whisk the eggs. Stir in the stock, salt, and pepper. Add the egg mixture to the bread mixture in two batches, mixing lightly after each addition. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish. Dot with remaining 5 tablespoons butter.

8. Bake the stuffing for 30 to 40 minutes or until the top is golden and the center is hot. Adapted from Hi-Rise Bread Co.

Sausage and French bread stuffing