Sausage Stuffing with Mozzarella
The name of this stuffing is really Luke’s Stuffing but if we called it that, no one would really know what was in it, right? Well it is full of lots of delicious things including sausage, chunks of bread, and mozzarella. In all honestly this may be more of a strata rather than a stuffing, but it is Thanskgiving and it is deliciois so who really cares, right?
The orign of this dish started when I first met Luke, my husband. We were celebrating our first Thanksgiving together and he started talking about how many years ago he had the best stuffing ever and it included lots of sausage and mozzarella. I did a little digging and found this Epicurious recipe then did my own little spin on it.
Warning, this stuffing is not for the faint of heart but it is delicious and we only make it once or twice a year and it basically makes him the happiest person ever and that is all that really maters, right?
Sausage Stuffing with Mozzarella (aka Luke’s Stuffing)
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 lb pork or chicken Italian sausage
2 Tbs. butter
4 celery stalks, diced
2 onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbs, fresh thyme, chopped, plus more for garnish
1 lb stale Italian bread such as ciabatta, cut into 1” pieces
1 cup chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream, divided
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, cut into pieces
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9” x 13” oven safe baking dish with non stick spray.
In a large saute pan warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook until browned, breaking up the large pieces, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the sausage and place in a large bowl.
In the same pan melt the butter over medium heat. Add the celery, onion, and large pinch of salt and cook for 4 to 6 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Add the garlic and thyme and cook for another 30 seconds. Remove the vegetable mixture and place in the bowl with the sausage.
In a small bowl whisk to combine the chicken stock, 1/2 cup heavy cream, and eggs. Pour the mixture over the bread, vegetable and sausage mixture and mix well. Fold in the mozzerella and Parmesan cheese.
Put the stuffing mixture in the prepared dish and drizzle with remaining cream. Bake covered with foil for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until the bread is golden brown, about 10 to 15 more minutes.
Garnish with fresh thyme then serve stuffing warm, alongside turkey ( or just by itself. )
Makes about 6 to 8 servings.