Makes Enough Stuffing for a 25 lb. Turkey with Extra to Bake as a Side-Dish
You can make the cornbread several days in advance. Wrap it in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to a week or in the freezer for a month.
I get the Andouille Sausage from my friend Drew who is from New Orleans and when he goes home to visit his family, he always brings me back a nice “Stick” of Andouille. If you don’t want the spice Andouille can give you, you can use whatever sausage is to your liking. A mild polish sausage is great in the recipe as well. You can get a good quality Andouille locally at your grocer.
Don’t bother to dice the veggies by hand. Do it in the food processor. Just be sure you don’t puree them. DO cut the chestnuts by hand. If you put them in the processor they turn to mush.
If you don’t want to go through the whole roasting and peeling of the chestnuts (I don’t) you can purchase cooked and peeled chestnuts in the jar. I found them at my grocery store and Williams-Sonoma has them for sure.
1 Pound Loaf Pepperidge Farm White Bread, Crust Removed
1 Lb. Smoked Andouille Sausage
12 Ounces Unsalted Butter
1 Lb. Celery, Finely Diced
1 Lb. Carrots, Finely Diced
2 Medium Onions, Finely Diced
3 Cups Cooked and Peeled Chestnuts, Medium Dice
6 Large Eggs, Lightly Beaten
1 Tablespoon Rubbed Sage
3 Teaspoons Coarse Seat Salt
1½ Teaspoons Freshly Ground Black Pepper
2 Cups Homemade Chicken Stock Or Canned Low Sodium Chicken Broth
Cube the Cornbread and White Bread into 1” pieces. Spread the cubes evenly in one layer on a half sheet pan or cookie sheet and let dry over night in a cooled oven with the door closed. (You may need two pans.)
In a large sauté pan melt the butter over medium heat and add the celery, carrot and onion and cook until the vegetables are soft, not browned, about 15 minutes (this is called “sweating the vegetables”). Cool slightly. Add all ingredients, except the chicken stock, and gently mix so as not to make bread mushy. Add the stock gradually and continue to mix gently.
Cool completely before stuffing bird.
Hints and Tips: Never stuff a cold bird with warm stuffing. This is how bacteria can form. It’s best to make the stuffing the day before and refrigerate it over-night. Bring the turkey and stuffing out of the refrigerator no more than an hour before stuffing and roasting.