The Best Homemade Dressing (or Stuffing)
CATEGORIES
INGREDIENTS
  • Cooking Time: 1 hour
  • Servings: serves 10 +
  • Preparation Time: 3 hours
  • Dressing (Stuffing):
  • Bread cubes from 1 1/2 loaves of Homemade Buttermilk Bread
  • SEE BELOW FOR RECIPE
  • OR use purchased old fashioned white bread.
  • 2 lbs mild breakfast sausage, break in small pieces
  • (optionally you can discard the sausage renderings OR incorporate into recipe)
  • Melt 1 to 2 sticks butter
  • 1 to 2 medium or 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 lb mushrooms, finely chopped
  • Season to taste with crushed pepper, salt, sage, thyme
  • Optional flavoring:
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup dry sherry, brandy or good bourbon whiskey
  • Homemade Buttermilk Bread Ingredients:
  • ~ 5 1/2 Cups Bread or All Purpose Flour
  • 3 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 pkgs. dry yeast
  • 2 C. buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup oil, such as canola
  • several extra Tablespoons flour if needed
DIRECTIONS
  1. Dressing (or Stuffing) for about 10 people
  2. Use bread cubes from 1 1/2 loaves of homemade buttermilk bread
  3. SEE RECIPE BELOW
  4. OR use 2 loaves of "heavy" old fashioned white bread.
  5. Cut bread into 1/2 to 2/3 inch cubes. Set aside.
  6. In a large pot, cook 2 lbs mild breakfast sausage, break in small pieces
  7. (optionally you can discard the sausage renderings OR incorporate into recipe)
  8. Melt 1 to 2 sticks butter (depends on how "rich" you want it)
  9. Sauté in the butter and sausage:
  10. 1 to 2 medium or 1 large onion, diced
  11. 1 lb mushrooms, finely chopped
  12. Cook until the onion is translucent and the mushroom softened.
  13. Season to taste with crushed pepper, salt, sage, thyme
  14. Optionally for flavoring (before adding bread crumbs) add 1/4 to 1/2 cup dry sherry, brandy or good bourbon whiskey, and cook until the alcohol has dissipated.
  15. Place the Bread Cubes in a large bowl.
  16. Add the moist sautéed ingredients in 4 or 5 separate increments to the bread crumbs and mix thoroughly between each addition.
  17. This dressing can be kept refrigerated in plastic ziplock bags for a day or two prior to baking if needed.
  18. Bake the dressing at 350° for 30 to 40 minutes initially with aluminum foil over top and for crisp edges finish last 15 minutes with foil off.
  19. -------------------
  20. Perfect Buttermilk Bread
  21. Best for Homemade Bread Cubes used in Stuffing (Dressing) recipe
  22. Mix dry ingredients in large stand mixer, food processor or by hand depending on your situation and equipment available:
  23. ~ 5 1/2 Cups Bread Flour
  24. 3 Tablespoon sugar
  25. 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
  26. 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  27. 2 pkgs. dry yeast
  28. mixed well in food processor
  29. In microwave, warm 2 C. buttermilk and 1/3 cup oil to 115° (measured with instant read thermometer)
  30. Add warmed liquids to running processor or mixer.
  31. The dough will take shape quickly and beautifully, but if needed, add a few more Tbsp of flour.
  32. Boil 1 1/2 cups of water in the 2 cup pyrex measuring cup in the microwave (covered to prevent splashes) for several minutes. Move the measuring cup with hot water to the back corner of the microwave to provide heat and moisture and make the microwave a "proofing oven" for the dough. Set the dough in an oiled glass dish, and oil top of dough. Cover bowl with saran wrap, and place in the microwave. Let rise for about 30 to 45 minutes until about double the original volume.
  33. After this first rising, take out the dough and punch down and shape the dough into 1 regular and one smaller loaf. Put into 2 greased 5" x 9" bread pans. Raise a second time, then:
  34. Bake @ 375° for ~ 40 minutes
  35. Makes 2 medium, OR 1 large and 1 smaller loaf
  36. When you make the dressing, there may be a half of one of the loaves left over.
  37. Slice and toast for a piece of heaven.
RECIPE BACKSTORY
This recipe has evolved over the last 20 years and is now everyone's favorite at Thanksgiving or Christmas. There are two stages to the Dressing. if you are going to make it correctly and the BEST way, it is more work, because you need to bake your own bread for the recipe. (You could, but DON'T take the easy way out and just buy it).