I loved that this recipe used buttermilk to moisten the stuffing- in addition to the more typical stock and butter. The sausage was not overpowering in the finished dish but added great flavor. I used locally made sweet Italian sausage with fennel seeds- perfect.
This recipe was adapted from the New York Times, contributed by Yewande Komolafe. The sausage could be omitted for a vegetarian version. The original recipe notes that if store-bought or boxed mix cornbread is used, it should be crumbled and and spread out on a sheet pan to dry for 4 to 12 hours prior to assembling the dish. I made the accompanying cornbread recipe, which does not require drying time, two days prior to making the dish.
Yield: 8 to 10 servings
For the Cornbread:
8 T/115 grams/1 stick unsalted butter, melted, plus more for brushing the pan
1 1/2 cups/250 g medium-coarse yellow cornmeal
3/4 cup/114 g all-purpose flour
1/4 cup/55 g granulated sugar
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 cups/470 milliliters buttermilk, preferably full-fat (I used low-fat)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
For the Dressing:
3 T unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pan
1 T neutral oil, such as grapeseed or canola, plus more if needed
1 pound loose pork sausage (I used sweet Italian sausage)
1 large yellow onion, very finely chopped (2 cups)
4 celery ribs, very finely chopped (2 cups)
8 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
2 T chopped fresh sage (from 10 large leaves)
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 recipe cornbread for dressing, broken into 1-inch pieces, or 10 cups loosely packed cornbread
1 1/2 cups chicken, turkey or vegetable stock
1 cup buttermilk, preferably full-fat (I used low-fat)
To Make the Cornbread:
Heat oven to 400 degrees, preferably on convection.
Butter the bottom and sides of a 10-inch skillet, preferably cast-iron, and set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. (I weighed the dry ingredients when possible.)
Make a well in the center and pour in the buttermilk and eggs. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to stir until incorporated.
Fold in the melted butter.
Pour the batter into the prepared skillet and smooth the top.
Bake until the top is lightly browned and the sides pull away cleanly from the skillet, about 25 to 30 minutes.
Cool completely and serve warm or room temperature, or reserve to make cornbread dressing.
To Assemble & Bake the Dressing:
Heat oven to 375 degrees, preferably on convection. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
Heat a large skillet over medium and pour in the oil.
Add the sausage and cook, using a wooden spoon to break it into small pieces, until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink, about 8 minutes.
Transfer the cooked sausage to a plate, keeping any fat in the skillet. Add a few additional tablespoons oil if needed to evenly coat the bottom.
Add the onion and celery to the skillet. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 6 minutes.
Add the garlic, thyme, oregano, fennel seeds and sage, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Return the cooked sausage to the skillet and stir to incorporate. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, add the cornbread pieces and toss to combine.
Pour in the stock and buttermilk, and stir until well mixed. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary.
Transfer the cornbread mixture to your prepared dish and spread evenly.
Drizzle the melted butter over the top.
Cover the dish with foil and bake until heated through, 30 to 35 minutes.
Raise the oven temperature to 400 degrees, remove the foil and bake until the surface is golden brown in spots, 15 to 20 minutes.
This is a crowd-pleasing and quick summer dish. It was a wonderful meal served with a giant green salad. The original recipe notes that any summer vegetable, or a combination, can be used instead of the fresh corn. Chopped tomatoes, broccoli, summer squash, or even green beans would work.
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Chris Morocco. I modified the proportions. Great!
Yield: Serves 6
16 oz rigatoni
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 sprigs basil, plus 1 cup leaves for serving
1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper (or other mild red pepper flakes)
fresh corn kernels from 3 large ears
5 T unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 oz (about 1/2 cup) freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for serving (I used Parmigiano-Reggiano)
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente; drain, reserving 2 cups pasta cooking water.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium-high.
Add sausage and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until browned and cooked through, 6–8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to a plate.
Reduce heat to medium and cook sliced garlic in same pot, stirring occasionally, until light golden around edges, about 2 minutes.
Add basil sprigs and Aleppo pepper; cook, stirring, until basil is wilted, about 1 minute.
Place an ear of corn upright in a medium sized bowl. Use a knife to cut off the kernels. (The bowl will prevent the kernels from flying all over the counter.)
Add corn and 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta cooking water to the pot and cook, stirring often, until corn is mostly tender, about 3 minutes.
Stir in pasta and 1 cup pasta cooking water.
Add butter and cook, stirring, until butter is melted and sauce is smooth and creamy.
Add the Parmesan in several additions, stirring after each addition until sauce is smooth.
Return sausage to pot and cook until flavors meld, about 1 minute. If needed, add additional pasta cooking liquid to loosen the sauce. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Place in a serving bowl or individual shallow bowls. Top with basil leaves and more Parmesan and serve.
This was a crowd-pleasing dish to make with my beautiful CSA Napa cabbage. As suggested in the original recipe, we ate it in flour tortillas but it would also be delicious served over rice. It was reminiscent of one of our family favorites, Thai One-Pot.
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. I modified the proportions, used scallions instead of chives, and wilted all of the Napa cabbage.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6
1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled, finely grated
6 garlic cloves, finely grated
16 to 18 ounces hot Italian sausages, casings removed (I used 6 sausages)
2 tablespoons (or more) vegetable oil
8 ounces shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
6 to 10 cups very thinly sliced Napa cabbage, divided (I used 1/2 of a large head)
2 to 3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
2 to 3 tablespoons soy sauce
1/3 cup thinly sliced scallions or chives
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
8 large flour tortillas or mu-shu wraps, warmed (I used Trader Joe’s handmade flour tortillas)
hoisin sauce and Sriracha, for serving, as desired
Using your hands or a wooden spoon, work ginger and garlic into sausage in a medium bowl.
Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a large skillet, preferably cast iron (I used a 14″ stainless skillet), over medium-high and cook sausage mixture, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until browned, crisp, and cooked through, 6–8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage mixture to a clean bowl.
Increase heat to high and cook mushrooms in the fat in the skillet, tossing often, until browned and starting to release their juices, about 4 minutes (if skillet looks dry at any point, add a bit more oil).
Add half of cabbage and cook, tossing often, until cabbage is wilted and tender, about 4 minutes. (I incorporated all of the cabbage, a handful at a time.)
Drizzle in vinegar and soy sauce and cook, tossing, until liquid is mostly reduced and skillet is dry in spots, about 2 minutes.
Remove skillet from heat and incorporate sausage and remaining cabbage (if reserved) into stir-fry.
Drizzle with sesame oil and sprinkle with scallions/chives and sesame seeds.
Serve stir-fry with tortillas, hoisin sauce, and Sriracha for making individual wraps.
I love one-pan dishes! This dish is made in the oven using one baking dish. It was also easy to prepare. 🙂 I modified the recipe due to personal preference- and to incorporate ingredients that I had readily available. I included all of the options in the recipe below.
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Ali Slagle. I modified the proportions and oven temperature, used celery instead of fennel, and added carrots. I also substituted sweet Italian pork sausage for hot sausage and green lentils for brown lentils. The vinegar was essential to the finished dish.
Yield: Serves 6
4 celery stalks, diced or 1fennel bulb, cored, cut into 1/2-inch wedges through the root, plus 1/4 cup fresh fennel fronds
4 large carrots, diced
1 T extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds bulk hot or sweet Italian pork sausage (or fresh Italian sausages, casings removed)(or a combination)
3cups chicken stock
1 1/2cups green or brown lentils
4 to 8garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1fresh rosemary sprig
1-2tablespoons sherry vinegar, white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1/2cup fresh parsley leaves, plus more for serving
Heat the oven to 425°, preferably on convection.
In a 9×13-inch baking pan or baking dish, gently toss the celery and carrots (or fennel wedges) with the olive oil to coat. Season with salt and pepper. (I used a ceramic baking dish.)
Roast until vegetables are golden brown underneath, about 10 minutes for fennel or up to 20 minutes for carrots and celery. (Fennel will not be tender at this point.)
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, use your hands or a spoon to mix the sausage with the egg until combined. Roll the mixture into 16 (1 1/2-inch) meatballs.
Add the chicken stock, lentils, garlic and rosemary to the roasted vegetables. Stir to combine, then season with 3/4 teaspoon salt.
Place the meatballs in the lentil mixture, drizzle the meatballs with olive oil, then roast until the meatballs are browned on top and lentils are tender, 25 to 30 minutes.
Transfer the meatballs to a plate. Discard the rosemary sprig, then stir in the vinegar, parsley leaves and fennel fronds, if using (reserve a few fronds for garnishing, if desired). Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon the lentils and any braising liquid onto shallow bowls and top with the meatballs.
Garnish with additional parsley leaves and fennel fronds, if desired.
My husband and I traditionally celebrate our wedding anniversary by having an extravagant dinner at VOLT in Frederick, Maryland. It is the restaurant of Bryan Voltaggio, of Top Chef fame. On our 19th anniversary, we brought home an autographed cookbook after enjoying our lovely meal. Last Thanksgiving, I made two side dishes from this special book. ❤
This stuffing recipe was adapted from Home: Recipes to Cook With Family and Friends by Bryan Voltaggio. I modified the proportions and used prepared stock as well as store-bought sausage as shortcuts.
Both the cornbread and the poultry seasoning can be made days in advance, which is always helpful. It was interesting to me that the cornbread was made without a leavening agent, making it more dense than a typical cornbread. The stuffing had a deep celery flavor from the celery seed and chopped celery. Nice.
Yield: 10 servings
For the Cornbread:
nonstick cooking spray
1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
5 T (1/3 cup, 75g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 tsp (9g) fine sea salt
3 large eggs
2 tsp (12g) molasses, honey, or sorghum syrup
1/4 tsp (0.6g) freshly grated nutmeg
1 cup (240g) buttermilk
1 cup plus 2 1/2 T whole milk
2 2/3 cups (400g) all-purpose flour
2 cups (276g) cornmeal
For the Poultry Seasoning:
2 tsp (2g) finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp (0.5g) finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp (1g) finely chopped fresh sage
1 tsp (1g) finely chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp (2g) ground celery seed
1 tsp (2g) ground coriander
1 tsp (2g) onion powder
1/2 tsp (3g) fine sea salt
1/2 tsp (1.5g) freshly ground black pepper
For the Topping:
2/3 cup (50g) panko breadcrumbs
2 1/2 T (25g) poultry seasoning (above)
2 T unsalted butter, melted
For the Stuffing:
nonstick cooking spray
3 T extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil
4 1/2 cups (300g) freshly baked and cubed cornbread
1 pound loose sweet Italian pork sausage
2 medium onions, cut into 1/4-inch dice
3 medium carrots, cut into 1/4-inch dice
4 to 6 stalks celery, cut into 1/4-inch dice
fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chicken or turkey stock (preferably homemade)
For the Royale:
3 large eggs
1 cup (240g) milk or heavy cream
To Make the Cornbread:
Preheat the oven heat to 350 degrees F, preferably on convection. Spray or butter the bottom and sides of two 9-by-13-inch baking dishes. (One 13-by-18 inch casserole pan can be substituted.)
Put the sugar, 5 tablespoons butter and the salt in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes.
Beat in the eggs one at a time, waiting until each one is fully incorporated before adding another.
Beat in the molasses and nutmeg.
Reduce the mixer to low speed, add the buttermilk and milk, and beat until incorporated.
Add the flour and cornmeal, and beat on low speed until well combined.
Increase the speed to medium and beat until the batter is well-blended and thick, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times, 2 to 3 minutes.
Pour the batter onto the prepared baking dishes. Tap each dish on the counter to settle the batter.
Bake until the cornbread springs back lightly when pressed with your finger, 22 minutes on convection or up to 30 minutes in a standard oven.
Cool completely in the dish on a wire rack.
The cornbread may be made 3 days in advance, covered with plastic wrap, and held at room temperature.
To Make the Poultry Seasoning:
Combine the parsley, rosemary, sage and thyme in a small bowl.
Add the celery seeds, coriander, onion powder, salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
The seasoning can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
To Make the Topping:
Put the panko breadcrumbs in a medium bowl and add the poultry seasoning (the remainder may be used to season gravies and other holiday dishes).
Drizzle with the melted butter and toss with your fingers to moisten the breadcrumbs. Set aside.
To Make the Stuffing:
Preheat the oven heat to 325 degrees F, preferably on convection. Spray a 9-by-13-inch flameproof casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Cube the cornbread and put into a large mixing bowl.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat.
Add the sausage and cook, stirring and breaking it up into small pieces with the back of a spoon so it cooks evenly, until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the sausage to the cornbread.
Return the same skillet with the drippings to medium heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil.
Once the oil is hot, add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, about 3 minutes.
Add the carrots and celery, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the vegetables to the cornbread and sausage.
Put the eggs in a blender to make the Royale. Start the blender on low-speed and mix until the eggs are just blended.
Put the milk or cream in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and heat until a thermometer registers 180 degrees F. Add to the eggs in the blender and mix on low speed until homogenized.
Add the egg mixture to the cornbread mixture.
Add 2 cups of stock. Season with salt and pepper.
Fold everything together with a rubber spatula until fully combined and the stock has mostly been absorbed. The stuffing will seem a little too wet before baking.
Spread the stuffing in the baking dish. Lightly tap the dish on the counter to even out the mixture in the pan.
Add the topping, letting it fall from your fingers in an even layer across the top.
Bake the stuffing until very hot and cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes.
Turn the broiler on high, and broil the stuffing until the crust is GBD (Golden Brown and Delicious), 3 to 5 minutes.
Serve family-style from the casserole dish.
Note: When blending hot liquids, first let cool for 5 minutes or so, then transfer to a blender, filling only halfway. Put the lid on, leaving one corner open; this will prevent the vacuum effect that creates heat explosions. Cover the lid with a kitchen towel to catch splatters and pulse until smooth.
I actually have a third tasty soup to share. This one is reminiscent of one of our family favorites, Lentil-Kielbasa Soup. Don’t worry- it’s not so similar that it will prevent me from making my tried and true lentil-sausage soup as well this season. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Sarah Digregorio. I used French green lentils instead of black lentils, modified the proportions and incorporated a mixture of CSA greens including beet greens, broccoli greens and escarole. I also garnished the soup with my CSA parsley instead of basil.
This soup could easily be made on the stove top instead of in a slow cooker. I loved that it gobbled up my CSA greens too.
Yield: 6 servings
1pound hot or sweet Italian pork sausage, loose or removed from its casing
olive oil, if necessary
1large red or yellow onion, chopped
10 largegarlic cloves, chopped
1teaspoon onion powder
1teaspoon garlic powder
2oregano sprigs, leaves only, or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
generous pinch of red-pepper flakes
freshly ground black pepper
3/4cup dry white wine (I used Pinot Grigio)
2cups dried lentils, preferably black beluga (I used French green lentils)
1(14-ounce) can whole or chopped tomatoes
8cups chicken stock
5ounces greens, such as baby spinach or kale, or 1 medium bunch greens, such as chard or kale, stemmed and chopped (I used a mixture of beet & broccoli greens with escarole)
1 T red-wine vinegar
chopped fresh parsley or basil, for garnish
grated Parmigiano Reggiano, for garnish
In a large, dry skillet over medium-high heat, cook the sausage, breaking it up with a spatula, until it is in small, coarse pieces, and starts to brown and sizzle in its own fat, about 8 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked sausage to a 5- to 8-quart slow cooker. There should be a thin layer of fat covering the bottom of the skillet. If there is much more than that, pour a bit of the fat off. If there is not enough fat to cover the bottom of the pan, add a drizzle of olive oil.
Add the onion to the skillet, season generously with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium-low, add garlic and cook until softened and fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Add the onion and garlic powders, the herbs, red pepper flakes and several generous grinds of black pepper. Stir to combine.
Increase heat to medium-high, pour in the wine and stir well, scraping the bottom of the pot. Let the wine bubble until the pan is almost dry, about 3 minutes.
Scrape the skillet mixture into the slow cooker with the sausage.
Add the bay leaf and the lentils.
Add the tomatoes with their juice. If using whole, crush the tomatoes into pieces using your hands as you add them with their juice.
Pour in the chicken stock.
Season generously with pepper and add 1/2 teaspoon salt if you are using low-sodium stock or 1 teaspoon salt if using homemade unsalted stock. Do not add salt now if you are using fully salted stock.
Stir well to combine all ingredients. Cover and cook on low until the lentils are tender, about 6 to 8 hours. (Taste the lentils to make sure they are firm but creamy on the inside; black lentils can vary in their cooking time depending on their age and the heat of your slow cooker.) The soup holds well on warm for 2 additional hours.
Switch the heat to high. Remove and discard the thyme sprigs. Stir in the greens and cook until wilted and tender, about 2 minutes for baby spinach, 10 minutes for kale.
Stir in the vinegar.
Serve in bowls, topped with chopped parsley and/or basil and grated Parmesan.