See Part 1
: Continued from Part 1
MAKE DRESSING: 30 minutes before you are ready to stuff the turkey,
make the dressing.
Crumble the stale cornbread in the very largest bowl you can find.
Add the herbed bread cubes and mix thoroughly by hand. Add the rice
and mix thoroughly by hand.
Briefly saute the onions and celery in butter just enough to make the
vegetables translucent. Saute the mushrooms in butter (or margarine)
until all the resulting liquid has evaporated. Add the sauteed
onions, celery and mushrooms, and mix thoroughly. Add the pecans and
mix thoroughly. Season with salt, pepper, sage and thyme to taste.
Bring the turkey broth to the boil and boil for a minute or two to
make sure it is sterile. If you are going to stuff the turkey, add
just enough turkey broth to barely moisten the dressing. Taste for
seasoning and adjust if necessary.
Very loosely stuff the abdominal cavity and breast cavity with
dressing. Do not pack it in tightly. It needs room to expand. You
are going to be cooking some more dressing in a baking pan beside the
turkey, so there will be plenty to go around.
Secure neck cavity opening with one or more poultry skewers. The
abdominal cavity may be left open or (if your butcher cleaned the
turkey properly and left a flap of skin) secured with poultry skewers.
Add enough boiling broth to the remaining dressing to moisten it
uniformly. Do not over-moisten. The baked dressing should be barely
moist, not gummy-wet. 14 Spoon dressing into uncoated baking pans.
Cover with foil/plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to bake.
One half hour before serving dinner, bake dressing, uncovered, at 425
degrees F. for 30 minutes.
* Southwestern style herbed cornbread turkey stuffing — This is the
traditional McGarvey family dressing for Thanksgiving and Christmas
dinner. It originated with my maternal grandmother in southern
Virginia and evolved through her moves to Texas, Oklahoma and
California and further evolved through my military family’s moves all
over the world. The recipe includes making 1 batch of cornbread and
1 batch of turkey broth. Directions are given for both stuffing the
bird and baking the dressing separately.
* This recipe makes enough dressing to stuff a 15-pound turkey and 2
9-inch-square baking pans.
* Never stuff the turkey until you are ready to roast it. Cooking
lore is rife with horror stories of food poisoning resulting from
turkeys stuffed too early and let sit while wonderful organisms
develop in the stuffing. Make sure you bring the turkey broth to a
boil before you use it, just to make sure that nothing is growing in
it. The stuffing inside a turkey does not reach a high enough
temperature to kill bacteria while the turkey is roasting, so you
must be extremely careful with what you put there.
* I like to use Pepperidge Farm brand herbed bread cubes.
* I use a huge ceramic bowl (large enough for “rising” a 4-loaf
recipe of bread dough) in which to mix the dressing. If you don’t
have one handy, you can use your kitchen sink. Clean and rinse the
sink thoroughly, then put in the stopper and use as a mixing bowl. If
you are going to stuff the turkey, be sure that you don’t overmoisten
the dressing. The stuffing will absorb a lot of moisture from the
bird, and who wants a turkey with stuffing soup? Also, be sure to not
over-stuff the turkey: the stuffing will expand during the roasting
and it needs room to expand.
* About 12 C of turkey broth is at least double the amount of liquid
necessary to moisten the dressing. If you use all of it, you will
not have a relatively light, dry dressing. The extra broth should be
used in making turkey gravy or can be the base stock for making
turkey soup with the carcass. If you’re not up to making turkey
broth, you can substitute chicken broth, but this is a great way to
use the neck and gizzard.
* No quantities of the herbs are given because you can make this as
spicy or as mild as you like. We like ours heavy on the sage and
: Difficulty: moderate.
: Time: several hours, spread over 2 days.
: Precision: measure the cornbread ingredients.
: Pamela McGarvey
: UCLA Comprehensive Epilepsy Program, Los Angeles, Calif., USA