Images: Maya Visnyei
Forget about box stuffing and serve guests tasty sausage and thyme bread stuffing this holiday season.
- ½ cup unsalted butter, divided
- 1½ lbs artisanal pork sausages, casings removed
- 1 sweet onion, finely diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and grated
- 3 stalks celery, finely diced
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups fresh bread crumbs from an Italian-style loaf
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2 Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet and saute the sausage meat, breaking it up into pieces with a wooden spoon, until cooked through and no longer pink, about 7 to 10 minutes.
3 Place in a large bowl with the drippings, which will keep the stuffing moist. Add the remaining butter to the skillet and cook the onion, carrots and celery until softened and just beginning to colour, about 5 minutes.
4 Stir in the salt, pepper, bread crumbs and thyme. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Return the sausage meat and drippings to the pan, stirring with a spoon until everything is evenly combined and the bread crumbs are moistened.
5 Spoon the stuffing into a large, shallow casserole dish and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until hot and starting to brown on top.
TIP: The advantage of buying good-quality, housemade sausages from the butcher is that they are nicely seasoned and have just the right proportion of meat to fat to keep them juicy, flavourful and moist. Simply remove them from the casings and they are ready to use for stuffing.