A few years ago, while planning the Thanksgiving menu, I came up with this stuffing bread recipe. Like many of us, I had followed the family stuffing recipe most of my adult life. Stuffing that was almost a meal in itself with mashed potatoes and lots of toasted bread. Let’s just say it probably wasn’t on any Adkins diet plan. But I almost always purchased bags of ready-made toasted bread cubes instead of making them myself.
But then I decided to “shake up” my traditional Thanksgiving meal and chose to make a vegetarian stuffing, I wanted nothing but the best. So homemade bread it was. You don’t have to use this bread to make stuffing, it would also be good sliced with a hot bowl of soup. But it makes a great stuffing. I have included the stuffing recipe below – the combination of tangy sourdough, sweet apple, and fennel is a winner. And while this stuffing mix may please the vegetarians in the family, meat-eaters will find it tangy and delicious too.
Stuffing bread starts with a sourdough base. It really isn’t difficult to make your own sourdough starter. You can use the method I prefer, found on my website Make Your Own Sourdough Starter. Or follow the methods found in earlier Mother Earth News articles, including Creating Homemade Sourdough Bread From a Starter Mix, and a previous blog post, A Beginner’s Guide to Sourdough.
• 2 cups sourdough starter
• 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1-1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
• 1-1/2 tsp salt
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 tsp sugar
• 1 tsp dried parsley
• 1/2 tsp each dried rosemary and sage
• 1/2 cup milk
1. In a large bowl or stand mixer bowl, combine the starter with all ingredients. Knead until the dough is smooth and shiny. Let dough rise in a greased, covered bowl 3 to 4 hours. Shape into a round, cover and let rise on a parchment lined bakers peel for another 1 to 1-1/2 hours.
2. Preheat oven and baking stone to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Slash the top of the round and slide onto the hot stone. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until the internal temperature is about 205 degrees.
3. Move bread to a cooling rack and let cool completely. Slice bread and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Lay the cubes out on a large baking sheet.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden. Yield about 12 cups of cubes.
• 12 cups sourdough bread cubes, toasted
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 large fennel bulb, chopped
• 3 stalks celery, chopped
• 3 large apples, peeled, cored and chopped
• 1 shallot, diced
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
• 1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
• 1-1/4 cup vegetable broth
• 1/2 cup apple cider
• 2 eggs, lightly beaten
1. In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add celery, shallot, and fennel and sauté until crisp-tender, about 10 minutes.
2. Add the garlic and the apple and continue cooking for 5 more minutes.
3. Add sage and cook for another minute. Add skillet mixture and parsley to the bread cubes. Toss to combine.
4. Combine the broth, cider and eggs. Add to bread mixture, stirring lightly to combine.
5. Spoon into a greased, 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until top is browned.
You can find additional photos of the bread and stuffing on the original post, Sourdough Stuffing Bread.
Note: This recipe is adapted from one found in the November, 2012 issue of Cooking Light.