This is the Sourdough Stuffing I make every year for the holidays.
And every year it never fails to impress us all. When home-baked sourdough bread is used as a stuffing for roasted poultry it takes on an almost bread pudding like texture. It’s soft and moist because it does a wonderful job of absorbing all the wonderful cooking juices and basting liquids (butter). It has a mild tang that is classic to sourdough and compliments the meal with its depth of character.
Save those sourdough scraps, heels and ends!
In the months leading up to winter I keep a bag in my freezer for sourdough scraps. When we get down to the end of a loaf I toss it in the baggie and make another to replace it. I save up a full gallon ziplock of scraps for this dish alone.
Making sourdough breadcrumbs is easy.
When you have collected plenty of sourdough scraps you can easily make breadcrumbs by following these simple steps.
- Defrost the sourdough scraps.
- Tear them into small pieces.
- Pulse them in the food processor (super fast and easy) or chop them with a knife.
- Spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Toast them in a 200° oven until dry.
I’ve never written down this recipe (until now). I’ve always cooked it from memory.
This post is more like a guide than a recipe. Stuffing can be as unique as you are. Play around with the flavors of spice and vegetables and you will surely develop your own favorite Nourishing Holiday Tradition.
Recipe yields 12+ cups of stuffing.
3 Tablespoons Butter
1 Pound Fresh Pork Sausage (click HERE for my recipe)
One Large Onion
4-6 Ribs Of Celery
2 Large Carrots
1 Bulb Of Fresh Fennel
1+ Pound Mixed Mushrooms∗
3 Tablespoons Fresh Garlic
3 Tablespoons Fresh Thyme
12 Cups Toasted Sourdough Crumbs
3-4 Cups Chicken or Turkey Stock
Some of my favorite additions to this recipe include; pinenuts, more varieties of fresh herbs, cranberries, and apple. What will you add?
∗When choosing mushrooms, you can find them at a grocery store or Farmer’s Market. If choosing wild mushrooms please make sure you are buying them from a licensed, experienced mycologist. Choose mushrooms that are in season and preferably local. Some varieties to look for would be hen of the woods, morels, chanterelles, lion’s mane and oysters. I also like to use small shiitakes or button mushrooms if more unique mushrooms are not available.
In a large heavy skillet ( I used my 15 inch cast iron!) melt the butter over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot crumble the sausage and add it into the pan. Stir the pan occasionally letting the sausage brown on all sides.
While the sausage is browning, dice the onion, celery, carrot and fennel. Add the vegetables to the sausage and continue to cook.
Clean and cut your mushrooms if needed. Add them to the mix.
Mince the garlic and thyme and add it to the pan. Continue to sauté this mixture until the vegetables are al dente.
Add one cup of stock to the pan and deglaze any fond on the bottom of the pan.
If your pan is big enough add the breadcrumbs directly to the pan. If not you can proceed in a large bowl.
Mix the breadcrumbs thoroughly into the sausage mixture. Add one cup of stock at a time until the mixture is dampened completely. Do Not Soak It! The crumbs should still be individual but able to stick together if picked up and pressed.
Let the stuffing cool before packing it loosely into a large fowl for roasting. If there is extra stuffing it can be baked in a casserole dish until it’s completely reheated then served.