Let’s get this Thanksgiving thing started, but first thing’s first – do you call it stuffing or dressing?
Obviously, based on the title here, you know where I stand. My humble opinion is that dressing is what goes on salad, and stuffing is my favorite carb-loaded Thanksgiving side dish… of course my version here isn’t actually stuffed into anything. Except for my mouth, I suppose.
This year, instead of going crazy with stuffing made of cornbread or poblano peppers, I’m keeping things kind of classic. This is similar to my mom’s traditional recipe, except I fancied it up with a mix of mushrooms, my favorite nine-grain bread, olive oil (instead of butter or vegan butter), kale, and tons of fresh sage & rosemary. As I just typed that I can feel my mom rolling her eyes because this isn’t exactly a stuffing recipe on a budget.
Cost of shiitake mushrooms aside (although you can totally sub them for any mushrooms), this stuffing is pretty easy to make, and it reheats really well. I think it actually tasted better the longer it sat. It was delicious the second day so by all means – make this in advance. See my reheating notes below…
- 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- ½ cup coarsely chopped cipollini onions
- 3 cups chopped & stemmed mushrooms (mix of shiitakes & creminis)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- ¼ cup chopped sage
- 2 tablespoons minced rosemary
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 5 cups cubed bread (mix of ciabatta & a hearty nine grain)
- A few kale leaves, coarsely chopped or torn
- 2 cups vegetable stock, plus more for reheating
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8x12 or 9x13 casserole dish.
- In the largest skillet you have, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and let cook until they start to soften. Add the mushrooms, salt & pepper and let the mushrooms cook for about 5 minutes, stirring only occasionally. Add the garlic, celery, sage, and rosemary and cook until everything is soft and the mushrooms are golden brown (about 8-10 minutes).
- Add the balsamic vinegar, stir, and scrape any bits off the bottom of the pan. Add the bread and the remaining ¼ cup olive oil and toss to coat (as well as you can, it might be a little crowded in the pan). Add the kale and another pinch of salt and cook until the kale begins to wilt. Add 1 cup of stock and stir.
- Transfer to a casserole dish. If it seems too dry, pour more stock evenly over the stuffing. (I found this turned out better when I added more stock than I thought I needed. The amount you use will depend on the density of your bread).
- Sprinkle with the dried cranberries and bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Let sit for at least 15 minutes or until ready to serve.
pictured: Staub Cast Iron 12 x 8 Roasting Pan