Sunday, November 18, 2012

Caroline's Cornbread Dressing

One of the many reasons why we love having my sister-in-law, Jen, as part of our family is the addition of her mom’s cornbread dressing to our Thanksgiving meal.  Caroline, Jen’s mom, has been serving this dish for 40 years and now you can try it too even without an invitation to her or our house.  The original recipe came from the Southern Living Party Cookbook (1972) as part of a Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner serving twelve.  Caroline has learned to double the recipe for her hungry family because they all want leftovers too.

Our menu is shaping up nicely:

  • Turkey Breast 
  • Caroline's Cornbread Dressing
  • Candied Sweet Potatoes
  • Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic Glaze
  • Baby Spinach Salad with Pomegranate and Oranges
  • Sour Cream Biscuits
  • Chocolate Pecan Pie

  • Ingredients:
    Caroline's Cornbread Dressing
    1.      4 cups breadcrumbs (Caroline notes that she never uses loaf bread.  She prefers making breadcrumbs from tiny biscuits from either Central Market or Kroger which you can bake and leave them out overnight to dry out. Another good alternative is Bisquick drop biscuits: 2 ¼ c of Bisquick + 2/3 cup milk. These can also be made the night before. They do not have to be left out, but can if you want.)
    2.      4 cups egg cornbread (Caroline likes white (vs yellow) corn meal and not the boxed cornbread mixes.  Follow the directions on the cornmeal bag but change the sugar in the recipe to 1/4 cup.  Caroline likes to cook it in a cast iron skillet in which you have fried up a couple of pieces of bacon and then poured the cornmeal batter into the hot skillet and then into the hot oven. You could also use a glass baking dish and grease it per the directions on the corn meal bag.)
    3.      1/2 cup chopped onion (Caroline cooks the onion and celery in the skillet before cooking the bacon until they are just soft/brown; she says it adds flavor.  You could also sauté in some butter to soften.)
    4.      1 cup chopped celery
    5.      Salt and pepper to taste
    6.      1 teaspoon sage (optional)
    7.      3 cups chicken or turkey broth
    8.      1/3 cup butter
    9.      1 cup milk

    Make the biscuits and cornbread according to the directions on the box.  Once both are cooled, crumble the biscuits into a large bowl.  Slice the cornbread into bite size chunks and add to the bowl of biscuit crumbs.  Then add the onion, celery, and seasonings (ingredients #3-6).  Add hot chicken or turkey broth to make a soft mixture.  Mix well.  Add butter and milk.  Mixture should be very soft to allow for loss of moisture during baking.  Add more broth if necessary.  Pour into greased pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour, until well browned.

    No comments: