While some families are debating whether jellied cranberries or whole cranberries are best, others are debating whether stuffing is best baked in a bird or aside from the bird. Here’s one that is guaranteed to be a winner regardless of your preference. It’s great for any holiday meal whether you are serving poultry or beef. This Italian Sausage and Fig Stuffing is a sweet change from the more traditional savory style stuffing.
Start by dicing up your dried figs. I like to dice most of them up into small 1/4″ size pieces that will blend well into the stuffing. That way, instead of fewer bursts of fig in the dressing, it melds with the other flavors more. However, you may enjoy those bursts of flavors. It’s entirely up to you. I take 6 or 8 figs and simmer them in the brandy to sweeten them further and rehydrate them. These are the figs I use as decorative accents on the top of the stuffing.
While your figs are simmering, brown you Italian Sausage and dice up your day old sourdough bread. You’ll want to break up your sausage into fairly small pieced, again to blend in better with the stuffing. Stir in the onion, celery, salt and pepper, allowing it to sauté until the onion becomes translucent. Don’t worry about draining the fat after. It will add flavor to your stuffing. Set it aside to cool while you continue to prep your remaining ingredients.
Now that all the individual components are ready, stir them together in a large mixing bowl. Turn the heat off under the rehydrating figs in brandy. Using a slotted spoon, remove the figs from the simmering brandy and set aside to cool. The brandy has had a chance to absorb the fig flavor and to cook down. Now, you can stir in the chicken broth, heavy cream and thyme. Your drenching sauce is ready to go.
While this recipe makes a more saturated stuffing, I like to limit my liquid for a more light and fluffy stuffing. So, depending on how much liquid you prefer in your stuffing, you may want to add the liquid in small amounts to your liking. Pour it over the stuffing mixture and toss the ingredients to combine. Once you have reached the desired moisture amount, pour your stuffing into a baking dish and top with the rehydrated figs.
Stuffing is something I’ve always been in a rut about. I can’t eat oysters (I’m intolerant and get crazy sick), so that rules out an oyster dressing. I’ve tried corn bread stuffing a number of times, but really don’t like the texture. So on and so forth with many dressing I’ve tried. A good old fashion sage dressing will always be at the top of the Turkey dressing list. However, this Italian Sausage and Fig Stuffing, is the bees knees when it comes to pairing with either poultry or beef. Try it the next time you make a brisket or roast. You won’t be disappointed.
Italian Sausage and Fig StuffingCourse: Dinner, Holidays, Side DishesDifficulty: Moderate
Here’s on that is guaranteed to be a winner either way. It’s grate for any holiday meal whether you are serving poultry or beef. This Italian Sausage and Fig Stuffing is a sweet change from the more traditional savory style stuffing.
8 oz. Ground Italian Sausage
1 Yellow Onion, diced
3 Celery Stalks, 1/4′ slices at an angle
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/3 tsp. Coarse Black Pepper
1/4 cup Brandy
8 oz. Dried Figs, 8 of which are sliced in half, the rest are diced
2 cups Chicken Broth
2 tsp. Thyme
1/4 cup Heavy Cream
1 pound Loaf of Day Old Sourdough Bread
- Brown the sausage in a medium sauce pan, adding diced onion, celery slices , salt and pepper toward the end.
- Sauté until the onions become translucent and set aside.
- Dice up the figs into your prefer size. Reserve 6 – 8 figs for cutting in half.
- In a small sauce pan, simmer the halved figs in the brandy enough to rehydrate the figs. This should take about 10 minutes.
- Using a slotting spoon, remove the figs from the brandy and set aside to cool.
- Dice up the sourdough bread into 1″ cubes. Don’t worry about uniformity. The varying sizes and shapes add rustic appearance to the dressing.
- Combine the sausage mixture, diced figs and bread in a large mixing bowl.
- Combine the brandy, chicken broth, cream and thyme in the sauce pan or a medium size bowl.
- Working with small amounts, toss the liquid in with the stuffing mixture until your reach your desired moisture.
- Transfer to a 2 quart baking dish and bake at 375 degrees for approximately 30 minutes.
* Hint: For a dryer and more fluffy stuffing, do not cover. For a more moist stuffy, cover with foil for the first 20 minutes, removing the foil for the last 10 minutes to brown.
8 servings per container
- Amount Per ServingCalories215
- % Daily Value *
- Total Fat
- Saturated Fat 5.82g 30%
- Trans Fat .015g
- Cholesterol 52mg 18%
- Sodium 891mg 38%
- Potassium 466mg 14%
- Total Carbohydrate
- Dietary Fiber 4.7g 19%
- Sugars 18.47g
- Protein 23.26g 47%
* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.