Stuffing is one of those side dishes that I consider essential at Thanksgiving. It also happens to be my favorite part of the meal – I always go back for more than one helping. This stuffing is one that we have enjoyed at our Thanksgiving dinner since I was very little. It is simple and classic, no added frills. There are a number of picky eaters in my family, but this dish always passed the test. Don’t get me wrong though, it may be simple (no “funny” ingredients as some like to say) but is oh so good.
My grandma always cooked Thanksgiving dinner when we were younger and I vividly remember asking her one year for the recipe for her stuffing. She had this look on her face and made me promise not to tell anyone before she even shared the recipe. And that’s when she confessed that for that particular year she just used a box of stovetop and jazzed it up with some fresh veggies and spices. But, shhhh don’t tell.
Now, this stuffing is not from a box, but does taste ever so similar to that version that appeared every so often at Thanksgiving dinner. And I have a feeling that this one will continue to make appearances for many years to come. Counting down the days until I get to eat this again…
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 2 whole carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 (1 pound) loaf firm country white bread, cut into 1-inch slices and then into cubes (about ½ inch in size)*
- 1 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 2 to 3 quart baking dish with butter or nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- Add the butter to a large skillet set over medium-high heat. When melted, add the onion, celery and carrots. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. Lower the heat to medium-low and stir in the thyme, salt and pepper. Next add in the bread cubes and mix to combine. Pour the chicken broth over the mixture and stir gently. You want the bread cubes to be moist but not completely saturated with the broth, so adjust the amount slightly if needed.
- Transfer the stuffing to the prepared baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 1 hour, until the top is lightly browned.
*Your bread should preferable be about a day old (so not extremely fresh). I used a firm whole-wheat loaf and that worked wonderfully as well.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Holiday Entertaining.