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Stuffing 101
•Moist (as in fresh) bread makes for a sticky, gummy dressing. So either dry it overnight at room temperature after cutting it into cubes, or bake it in a low oven for a few minutes before tossing with other ingredients.
•Fresh herbs will give your stuffing a more vibrant flavor than dried.
•Don’t mix wet and dry ingredients until just before cooking, and never, ever stuff the turkey the night before. That gives bacteria too much time to produce toxins that can make you sick.
•Stuffing will expand and become more moist as the bird roasts, so don’t get too heavy-handed with whatever liquid you use to flavor the breadcrumbs.
•Don’t pack the cavity too tightly, or the breast meat will be finished cooking way before the stuffing. Check with an instant-read thermometer to make sure it’s reached 165 degrees; you always can finish it off in the microwave.
•Refrigerate or freeze any leftover stuffing within two hours of cooking, and reheat to 165 degrees before serving.
– Scripps Howard News Service
Associated Press
Looking for a less traditional Thanksgiving side? Try Multigrain and Wild Rice Stuffing With Apples and Herbs.

Thanksgiving recipes for dressing up stuffing

Scripps Howard News Service
Whip up some Cornbread and Sausage Dressing for a different take on a classic.
Family Features
Apple-Raisin Stuffing has a bit of sweetness to go with your Thanksgiving turkey.

Thanksgiving isn’t just about the turkey – it’s about what you put in it.

The combination of fine breads and savory seasonings of stuffing brings tradition and warmth to the holiday spread.

Whether you cook it in the bird or bake it on its own, add a dose of the unexpected to your own Thanksgiving menu by serving up a twist on classic stuffing.

Multigrain and Wild Rice Stuffing With Apples and Herbs

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

2 medium yellow onions, chopped

4 stalks celery, diced

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 bunch scallions, finely chopped

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup chopped fresh sage

1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon

1 cup cooked wild rice

3 medium apples, peeled and diced

1 cup golden raisins

1 loaf multigrain bread, cubed and toasted

2 1/2 cups low-sodium turkey or chicken broth or stock

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat a large casserole or 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onions and celery and cook until tender, 7 to 8 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the salt, pepper, scallions, parsley, sage and tarragon.

In a large bowl, combine the onion mixture with the cooked rice, apples, raisins and bread cubes. Stir in the broth. Spoon into the prepared pan and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes.

– Alison Ladman, Associated Press

Cornbread and Sausage Dressing

Unsalted butter to grease the baking dish

1 (8-inch) pan prepared cornbread, cut into 3/4 -inch cubes (about 8 cups)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound country-style fresh pork sausage, crumbled

1 cup finely diced yellow onion (about 1 large onion)

1 cup finely sliced celery (about 3 ribs)

2 cups chicken stock

3 large eggs

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with butter and set aside. Place the cornbread in a large mixing bowl and set aside.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, warm the oil until a few droplets of water sizzle when carefully sprinkled in the pan. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until the meat is browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Transfer the cooked meat to a colander and drain off the excess fat. Transfer the drained sausage to the cornbread mixing bowl.

Drain all but about 1 tablespoon of fat from the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 4 minutes. Transfer the cooked vegetables to the cornbread mixture. Toss to combine.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the chicken stock and eggs. Add to the cornbread mixture and toss to evenly coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer the stuffing to the prepared casserole dish. Bake, loosely covered with foil, until set and warmed through, about 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the top is browned, about 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Serves 8 to 10.

– Jennifer Chandler,

Scripps Howard News Service

Apple-Raisin Stuffing

1/4 butter

1 stalk celery, chopped (about 1/2 cup)

1 small onion, chopped (about 1/4 cup)

1 (10 1/2 -ounce) can Campbell’s Condensed Chicken Broth

4 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing

1 medium apple, cored and chopped (about 1 cup)

1/4 cup raisins

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Heat butter in 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add celery and onion and cook until tender, stirring occasionally. Add broth and heat to boil. Remove skillet from heat. Add stuffing, apples, raisins and cinnamon and mix lightly. Spoon stuffing mixture into 1 1/2 -quart casserole.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until stuffing is hot.

– Family Features

Caramelized Onion with Pancetta and Rosemary Stuffing

6 tablespoons butter

2 large sweet onions, diced (about 3 cups)

1 (4-ounce) package cubed pancetta (about 1 cup)

4 cloves garlic, chopped

2 stalks celery, diced (about 1 cup)

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves

3 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup sherry

1 (14-ounce) package Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat butter in 3-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and cook for 15 minutes or until well browned, stirring occasionally.

Stir pancetta, garlic, celery and rosemary in saucepan and cook until pancetta is well browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in broth and sherry and heat to boil. Remove saucepan from heat. Add stuffing and mix lightly. Spoon stuffing mixture into greased 3-quart casserole. Cover casserole.

Bake for 30 minutes or until stuffing mixture is hot.

– Family Features