Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Thanksgiving Recipes: Sausage and Apple Wine Stuffing

Last time I was at Hill Top Berry Farm and Winery, I bought a bottle of their Mountain Apple Wine. Since I had so much fun playing around using beer to make seasonal scones, I decided to see what I could do with the Apple Wine.  After playing around with dessert ideas, I did a 180 and started thinking about how to use the wine to brighten a stuffing/dressing recipe.   Since so many stuffing recipes pair sausage and apples, I thought a Sausage and Apple Wine Stuffing would be a natural match. 
1 lb. ground sausage
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp red pepper flakes
1 small onion sliced into slivers
1 tsp. fennel seeds
1 tsp fresh thyme
1 tsp. rosemary
2 tsp. sage (about four leaves)
8 cups sourdough bread, cut into small cubes
2 cups chicken broth
½ cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup apple wine
1 cup celery
½ cup dried cranberries
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and chopped into small cubes
2/3 cups walnuts

  1. In a large ovenproof pan over medium-high heat, add sausage, salt, black pepper, and fennel seeds.  Cook till nice and brown.  Then, remove from heat and drain on a paper towel.
  2. Reduce heat to medium and then, in the same pan, cook the onions in the sausage grease.  If there is too much grease, then sop up with a towel—if not enough, then add a little olive oil.  Keep stirring the onions and continue to cook until caramelized, about 30 minutes or so.  When done, remove from heat.  
  3. In a bowl, throw in the bread crumbs, thyme, rosemary, and sage.  Then, add the broth, vinegar, and apple wine.  Stir till all the bread is moist. 
  4. In the bowl, add celery, cranberries, apples, walnuts to the moistened bread.  Then, add the drained sausage and caramelized onions.  Stir to incorporate. 
  5. Remove mixture to the original pan.  Place in a 350°F oven and cook for 1 hour.  Stuffing will be brown on top.  
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