This awesome old fashioned, yet easy dressing recipe is for both inside the bird and stove top. The choice is yours.
It can be made fresh, or made ahead, frozen, and pulled out for use whenever the mood strikes, for any meat, pork, chicken, turkey… even to add a little something to chicken pot pie.
Since this dressing can be made as stovetop, cook up chicken legs and serve with dressing (add a little melted butter when reheating)
I originally had tasted this at my sister’s farm, from some old farm recipe book, and it became an immediate classic in my holiday stuffing repertoire. It has been tweaked to our family’s taste.
Stuffing, Homemade Farm Stovetop Dressing Recipe:
Recipe can be doubled, or cut in half as needed
1 cup butter (butter is better in this case for full flavour)
1 1/2 cups finely minced onion
12 cups coarse or fine bread crumbs or cubes (use regular bread, multi-grain bread, spelt bread or gluten free bread)
1 1/2 cups chopped celery (stalks and leaves)
1 tablespoon sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon each thyme, marjoram, summer savory; and poultry seasoning (optional)
Melt butter in large heavy saucepan. Add all the onion and 1/2 of the celery quantity, stirring occasionally, on medium low heat, until onions start to look translucent. Turn heat to low. Add breadcrumbs, stir, and remaining ingredients, stirring after each addition, and remove from heat. Continue stirring until mixture looks evenly mixed. (if making ahead, let the batch cool at this stage) .
For dry stuffing, add little or no liquid. for moist stuffing, mix in lightly with fork just enough broth (or hot water) to moisten dry crumbs. Cool and place stuffing in bird when ready to bake.
When we make it ahead to freeze, we let it cool completely, then fill plastic freezer bags approx 1/3 full, remove air, seal, and pat out flat – we freeze it flat too, so it doesn’t bunch up.
I reheat it in the oven, as it can burn quickly on the stove, by adding some chicken drippings (or melted butter). I like it a little on the dry side, so I don’t add too much, maybe a few tablespoons, and place oven foil loosely over the top.
One of the secrets to this recipe is to use a variety of different breads. This can be done easily, simply by taking the “ends” of the bread that no one likes to eat in the house (or stale buns, etc) and adding them into a large freezer bag that is well, in the freezer.
Once it gets full or I need freezer space, I make up a batch of stuffing, which significantly reduces the amount of prep at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter etc, AND we can easily have stuffing for Sunday dinner or just a nice family dinner!
Since there’s just two of us, on a regular basis, we can have a “holiday dinner” treat in the middle of the week, just because we can.