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While Mr. Tom Turkey, the main attraction of Thanksgiving Day, is busy cooking in the oven, it’s now time to address the supporting stars of the meal - the side dishes. With oven space at a premium, this is the ideal situation for using your crock pot. Traditionally, stuffing has been placed inside the bird or in a casserole dish tucked in the oven alongside sweet potato and green bean casseroles. This year, try something new and whip up some moist, flavorful stuffing in the crock pot instead. You will be impressed with the texture and taste of the dish plus the ease-of-use for this nifty kitchen appliance.
The following list of ingredients contains items most cooks have readily on hand in their pantry. Try this recipe ahead of time so that you can tweak it to suit your taste before the family arrives for the holiday meal.
Crock Pot Stuffing
1 loaf of white bread, cubed (14-15c. cubed)
3 c. chopped celery
1 ½ c. chopped sweet onion
2 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 ¼ c. margarine or butter, melted
handful of dried cranberries
sprinkle of sage
2 tbs. chicken broth
Optional ingredient- sage breakfast sausage, cooked and crumbled
The night before you plan to serve the stuffing, place the cubed bread in a large mixing bowl on the kitchen counter. Continue to stir throughout the evening and the next day to evenly expose the bread to air.
Arrange your assembled ingredients on the counter top before you begin to cook.
In a large frying pan, melt the margarine or butter on medium heat. Add celery and onions and cook until translucent. Meanwhile, if you choose to add sausage to the recipe, sauté separately and then drain the fat. Set aside in a small bowl.
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Add the celery and onions in butter to the cubed bread, and then mix in the remainder of ingredients. Stir well.
Spray the crock pot with a generous amount of cooking spray. Add the stuffing and then sprinkle some sage on top. Cook on low 4-5 hours. Stir halfway through the cooking time.
As you can see, this recipe produces a scrumptious, moist stuffing. If you prefer it drier, skip the chicken broth or place the finished product in the oven for 3-5 minutes to crisp the edges before serving. Bon appétit!