1. What is your recipe?
“My Mother’s Stuffing”
Recipe from Mary
As far as the recipe goes, I never really measure (neither did mom) but I judge by texture and quantity (how full the bowl is as opposed to how big the bird is) but here goes!
What follows should be sufficient for a 12 – 15lb turkey.
Remove the giblet, neck and liver from the cavity ( I usually toss the liver).
In a medium sauce pan combine the giblet, neck, one stalk of celery chopped, one medium onion, salt and about 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until about half of the liquid is reduced. Remove from heat and let cool.
Chop 1 medium onion, 2 stalks celery and 1/2 green pepper, place In a large skillet in which you have melted approx. 1 -2 tablespoons butter. Saute’ lightly, just until soft then remove from heat.
I generally use at least 1 entire loaf of stuffing bread, which I have broken up the night before so that it can dry out a bit.
In a large mixing bowl combine:
1 beaten egg
the onions, celery and green pepper
a handful of chopped parsley
lightly salt & pepper
Start with approximately 1/2 cut of the broth that you prepared earlier
Mix all of the above together. You want the bread to be moist enough for it to hold together if you make a ball. If you need more broth add just a little at a time you don’t want the stuffing to be squishy just wet enough to hang together.
If you have any broth left over use it to add to your gravy base when your turkey is done baking.
Gently stuff you turkey, not too tightly but enough to fill the cavity. If I have any stuffing left I usually wrap it in foil and put it in the oven for about 45 mins to an hour while the turkey is cooking.
All of this is just trial and error over the last 48 years, just remember that you can add more of anything if you want to change the taste, texture or quantity. Bigger bird, more bread (more everything), or if you just want more stuffing……again more everything!
My goal was to try to recreate the good feeling and one of the fond memories of my childhood and in doing so we have a great meal!
2. What is it about this recipe that you love?
I love this recipe because of the fond memories it brings to me of my family and my childhood.
3. How did you learn to make this recipe?
My interest in cooking was inspired by my mother’s ability to take so little and make it work for such a large family. There was never enough money for the fancy things and she was able to take the inexpensive ingredients and turn them into a fabulous meal. I learned by watching and helping and asking lots of questions!
4. Please share a story or memory to go along with the recipe.
I was the youngest of 7 children growing up in the Inlet section of Atlantic City in the 1950’s. Every Thanksgiving and Christmas my mother would be in the kitchen by 7:00 am working on the holiday meal. As she would saute’ the onions, celery and green pepper for the dressing for the turkey (birdzilla), which was large enough to feed our extended family, the smells from this fabulous combination would softly waft up to the second floor, gently nudging us awake. As an adult, I have been preparing my own holiday celebrations since I was 17 years old (my parents were both deceased by that time) and it isn’t a holiday until I get that skillet out and begin the prep for the holiday bird. The fragrance of the onions and celery are all I need to bring back those fond childhood memories. I know my mother is there with me every year, guiding and helping me in the kitchen.
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