"Freedom From Want", March 6,1943
"Freedom From Want",
March 6,1943

Norman Rockwell
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La Belle Cuisine - More Favorite Recipes

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Fine Cuisine with Art Infusion

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A Collection of Cornbread Dressings



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Sweet Corn, Northern Extrasweet Variety
Sweet Corn,...
Wally Eberhart
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A Field of Mature Cornstalks Ready for Harvest
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Paula Deen's Southern Cooking Bible:
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Peppers, Hot Shot Variety
Peppers, Hot Shot...
David Cavagnaro
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Joaquin Moragues
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La Belle Cuisine


Alternative Dressings for
Non-Yankee-Bread-Dressing Fans:

For the past generation or two there has been somewhat of a controversy
in our family about which dressing/stuffing would accompany the holiday bird.
When I was a young girl living in my maternal grandparents' household, there
was absolutely no question about it. Bread Dressing. (Years and years of living
in the Southeast has led me to refer to it as "Yankee Bread Dressing".) The
only point of controversy in those days had to do with oysters, my grandfather
having been quite the oyster fan. Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner without
oyster stew or oyster dressing (preferably both) would have been unheard of.
Since not everyone cared for oysters , my grandmother did not include oysters
in the dressing used to stuff the turkey; instead, she often opted for Scalloped Oysters or added them to the separate casserole of dressing which was baked alongside casseroles of scalloped corn or broccoli. This seemed to satisfy my grandfather entirely, so that problem had been solved.

As the years went by, I became more and more southernized and in the process became quite the cornbread dressing fan. Funny, but now that I think of it, the
first time I recall eating cornbread dressing was not in the south at all. It was in
Wichita, KS in a department store luncheon room. My grandmother and I used
to go there specifically for that reason, so I guess perhaps she was a closet
cornbread dressing fan. In any case, my pleas for cornbread dressing on the
family holiday table were in vain. Well just you wait until I have a family of
my own..... Sound familiar?

The issue has yet to be resolved. One recent Thanksgiving in New Orleans
found three generations of the family gathered for the celebration, plus a variety
of friends from quite diverse backgrounds. We wound up serving four different dressings. Granted, that's a LOT of dressing, but by the time Thanksgiving
weekend was over, there wasn't a morsel left! Just take your pick...


Basic Southern Cornbread Dressing

There are probably as many variations of cornbread dressing as there are
Southern cooks, but this very basic recipe is a very good starting point.

1 recipe of your favorite cornbread
4 slices white bread
1 large onion, diced
1 cup diced celery
3 tablespoons butter
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup turkey stock or chicken
broth (approximate)
Salt and pepper to taste

Crumble the cornbread coarsely into a jellyroll pan. Add diced or torn
pieces of white bread. Let the bread stand, covered loosely overnight.
In a heavy skillet sauté onion and celery in 3 tablespoons butter until vegetables are softened but not browned. In a large bowl combine the
bread mixture, onion mixture, eggs and turkey stock (or chicken broth).
Add salt and pepper and combine well.
Transfer the dressing to a buttered baking dish and bake it, covered, 15 minutes at 350 degrees F. Spoon about 1/3 cup pan juices from cooking
poultry over dressing and bake, uncovered, 10 minutes more. Repeat.
Serve and enjoy!

NOTE: Some folks prefer a little variety. 1 cup of chopped lightly toasted
pecans would be a welcome addition for many. One of the best cooks I
know insists on adding finely chopped bell pepper. Many southern cooks
add chopped hard-boiled eggs. I like to use scallions and an herb or two,
such as parsley, sage and thyme.


California Cornbread Dressing

5 cups crumbled cornbread
3 cups soft white bread cubes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup chopped celery, including
some leaves
1 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
1 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped scallions
6 tablespoons butter
2 ripe avocados, peeled and cubed
1 cup chopped toasted pecans
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
4 eggs, beaten
4 cups turkey stock or chicken broth

(I figure as long as we're deviating from the norm here, we may as well get
really bold with this. How about some minced garlic, cilantro, sliced pitted
ripe olives? My personal preference would be ripe olives over mushrooms,
even though I am a mushroom lover. Maybe jalapeños or my favorite – Tony
Chachere’s Creole Seasoning? The possibilities appear to be endless.)

In a very large bowl combine the crumbled cornbread, bread cubes, salt, pepper and thyme. Sauté celery, mushrooms, onions and scallions in butter until onion and celery are tender. Add to the cornbread mixture stirring to combine well. Stir in the avocados, pecans, parsley, eggs and turkey stock. Spoon the dressing into a lightly greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Bake 1
hour at 375 degrees F. Serves 8.


Let's kick it up a notch!

Hot Peppers
Hot Peppers
Joe Hipp
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Emeril's Andouille Cornbread Stuffing
Emeril's New New Orleans Cooking
by Emeril Lagasse & Jessie Tirsch, 1993,
William Morrow and Company, Inc.

"The taste of andouille is so distinctly delicious, you absolutely can’t
eat just one bite. That’s why this stuffing makes a hit of any roast
chicken, pork, or turkey."

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onions
4 ounces (1/2 cup) chopped andouille sausage
1/4 cup chopped green onions
2 tablespoons chopped celery
2 tablespoons chopped green bell peppers
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon Emeril’s Creole Seasoning
[or other Creole or Cajun seasoning]
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 turns freshly ground black pepper
1 cup coarsely crumbled Jalapeño Corn Muffins,
recipe follows, [or other cornbread]
1/2 cup Basic Chicken Stock

1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the onions and
andouille and sauté for 1 minute. Add the green onions, celery,
bell peppers, and garlic and stir-fry for 1 minute.
2. Stir in the Creole Seasoning, salt, pepper, corn muffins, and stock
and cook, stirring and shaking the skillet, for 2 minutes. Remove
from the heat. Use immediately. Makes 1 1/2 cups.

Jalapeño Corn Muffins

1 tablespoon softened butter
4 large eggs
2 tablespoons seeded and minced
jalapeño peppers
2 cups fresh corn kernels, scraped from
3 or 4 blanched ears of corn
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin with the
softened butter.
In a large bowl whisk the eggs with the jalapeños and corn. Stir in the
flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Beat in the milk and oil. Pour
the batter into the muffin tin.
Bake until golden, for about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and
cool slightly before serving.
Yield: 12 muffins

(Obviously, if you insist on stuffing a turkey with this dressing,
the amounts will have to be increased considerably. MG)

Featured Archive Recipes:
Chef John Besh's Crawfish Cornbread Dressing
Cornbread Dressing w/ Sausage (Saveur)
Holiday Dressing/Stuffing Recipes (Emeril)
Louisiana Italian Sausage, Cornbread
and Fennel Stuffing

Old-Fashioned Yankee Bread Stuffing
Sheila Lukins's Favorite Stuffing
To stuff, or not to stuff...

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