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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Accidental stuffing

Because I am me, and I am accident prone, I somehow managed to pull my back out this weekend (and no, I don't know how.....).  I was able to muscle through my work day on Sunday, but by the time I woke up on Monday morning I was hurting.  Long story short, after a warm bath (and a couple muscle relaxers), I was feeling almost normal.  Which is why when my husband asked me "what's for dinner", I gave him an answer instead of a dirty look.  The cooler weather plus the general ouchiness of my back made me want just simple, stick to your ribs comfort food.  And I can't think of better comfort than chicken and stuffing (and potatoes, and corn, and gravy, and cranberry sauce......I needed a lot of comfort that night, apparently!).

The previous paragraph of me whining about my back was my round about apology for not photographically documenting every single step of this process.  The good news is that I think you can handle ripping bread, and dicing and sauteeing onions without pictures (I have faith in you!).

So, why did I call this post "accidental stuffing?".  Because it truly WAS an accident.  I found out on Monday that my husband hates celery in his stuffing.  Really?  After 3 years, he decides to tell me NOW that he hates this?  You know, after I've been making it that way for the entire duration of our relationship? *sigh*  Luckily, I decided not to get annoyed and chalked this up to a learning experience (I love you, baby!) and decided I needed to get creative.  I started brainstorming what I could possibly do to plain white bread to make it interesting.  OK, let's back it up for a second so I can also tell you that I did not stuff the bird.  Now we're dealing with bread and onions cooked OUTSIDE of the chicken....what can I possibly do to jazz this up?  After rifling through my cupboards and grabbing miscellaneous things, I had the "aha!" moment and came up with this:

Stuffing with dried cherries and walnuts
1 large loaf plain white bread
1/2 stick butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 T fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/4 c dried cherries, chopped
1 c chicken stock
2 T chopped walnuts
Salt and Pepper to taste

This stuffing is sexy!! 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  That's the temp I cooked my chicken at, so I just put it in the oven with my chicken.

Start by ripping bread into small chunks and putting into a medium casserole dish.  Set aside.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan and add onions and parsley.  Cook over medium high heat, stirring often, until onions are transparent and slightly brown.  Remove from the heat and pour over the bread.  Add chicken stock, salt and pepper, and dried cherries to mixture.  Stir well.

Yummy!!  It's even good cold!
Now, that's skill......

Sprinkle chopped walnuts over the top.

Bake uncovered for 35-45 minutes, until heated through and top gets a little brown.

Honestly, when I made this, I wasn't sure how it would turn out.  I mean, it SOUNDS good, but without the celery I was afraid it would be missing something.  Boy, was I wrong!!  I looked at my hubby and asked how it was and got the "happy food dance" (I get that a lot. Someday I should post a video of this.....).  He then informed me that this is how I make stuffing now. And only this way. I'd say I nailed it!

Edit: I LOVE this recipe, and decided to submit this to:
Joybee, What's for Dinner?


  1. I love stuffing. I always pull out my Grandma's recipe every year and I just look forward to it. It is one of those comfort foods that just makes every meal better! I love dried cherries and I like the idea of the nuts for added crunch too. I will have to step outside my usual and try this one out :) I just pinned it!

    1. I always made stuffing just like my mom and grandma did, and this just happened really because I didn't have celery and didn't feel like going back out. It really was delicious! Hope you like it! Thanks for the pin. :)