I’m a big fan of stuffing. If the only thing on my Thanksgiving plate were stuffing and smashed potatoes, I’d be plenty grateful.
And here’s the thing. I love simple stuffings – like the old Stove Top stuff (don’t judge). Of course it is sadly full of gluten so we can’t touch the stuff, but we can recreate our own. And guess what? It is smashingly easy and way less expensive.
I don’t like stuffing with fancy things in it. I’m not a fan of little diced dried fruits, chestnuts, or even sausage (though on the side would be fine). I don’t like nuts or other oddities in my stuffing. I like stuffing that has celery, a tiny bit of onion, a lot of butter and stock mixed with seasoned bread crumbs. I like that it can be tossed together in no time at all. I like that I can make enough for a small city and it costs next to nothing.
Here’s how you do it. Get some of your favorite gluten-free bread. The bread counts for a lot of the flavor. Whether you buy the loaf or make it doesn’t matter. Just make sure you love it.
I don’t like x-gum so I generally shove an extra loaf into the freezer like when we made this challah here. Wrap it up and toss the loaf into the freezer. And it really doesn’t have to be handled all that carefully because it will be made into stale cubes anyway.
And then just because it makes stuffing taste all the better, make or buy a GF cornbread. Cornbread is easy to toss together and there are several good mixes out there. Cut a couple of pieces to eat while it is fresh from the oven warm, and then cube up the rest and leave it out to get stale. This Fletcher Fields Cornbread recipe here is one I use often (though I don’t use x-gum in it anymore). And for this purpose, I would reduce the sugar by half at least.
If I’m feeling a little bit adventuresome I tart up the cornbread with herbs and spices like poultry seasoning, extra thyme and a sprinkle of kosher salt and pepper right into the batter.
I cube up the other loaf of bread and toss it with a little olive oil and more herbs and send it into a low oven to toast slightly and then leave it out on the counter for a few days to get really stale.
And then the only work left is to heat up the broth just a little bit, sauté a little celery and onion with some seasonings, and toss it all together gently and bake.
Move over Stove Top. We might be gluten-free, but we aren’t stuffing-free.
|Really Good Thanksgiving Stuffing, Gluten Free||
- 1 (one pound) loaf of gluten-free bread (your favorite)
- 1 batch of cornbread (favorite mix or recipe)
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-2 stalks of celery
- 1 very small onion or shallot
- 3 tablespoons white wine
- 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning or more to taste as directed
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- sprinkle of onion powder and garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried or freshly chopped parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3-4 tablespoons butter
- 2-3 cups low sodium or homemade chicken broth (Turkey or vegetable optional)
- 2 whole large eggs
- drizzle of really good olive oil
- Cube the bread and cornbread into inch chunks. (optional pre-toasting: in a large bowl toss with a drizzle or two of olive oil and add some poultry seasoning, thyme, salt and pepper. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in 350 degree oven for about 12 minutes – cool on counter). Leave the bread chunks in a single layer on the baking sheet on the counter for at least one day and up to two or three.
- Chop the celery and onion or shallot into a fine dice and sauté in a pan over medium heat in a drizzle of olive oil until wilted. Add the wine and let it evaporate. Add more of the seasonings (poultry, thyme, garlic and onion powder) and the butter. Add the parsley, salt and pepper. In a large bowl pour the vegetable mixture over the top of the bread cubes. Give it a fold or two just to mix it up, but gently. Mix two cups of warm (not hot) broth with the eggs and pour over the stuffing mixture. Fold it in. Let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes while you preheat the oven to 350.
- Butter a 9×9 casserole. If the mixture seems too dry, add a little more broth at this point – you want it to be damp, but not swimming in liquid. Spoon into the prepared casserole and drizzle with a little more olive oil.
- Bake about 35 minutes or until the top is crusty brown and the stuffing is thoroughly cooked through. Finish with another drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt & pepper if you want.