This is a riff on a stuffing that my father used to make for his brothers in the FDNY. My mother, who grew up in Puerto Rico, didn’t know from stuffing, so she turned it into something more familiar with the addition of chorizo or longaniza sausage and spiced it up, Connie style. This version is left simple deliberately because it is being served alongside the very complex flavors of the Manchamanteles. If you’re serving this stuffing with a more traditional turkey, feel free to add fresh fruits like apples or dried fruits like mangoes, figs, or apricots, or another vegetable, like finely diced jicama or chayote, along with the onion, celery, and carrots.
From DAISY'S HOLIDAY COOKING by Daisy Martinez with Chris Styler. Copyright (c) 2010 by Daisy Martinez. Reprinted by permission of Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.
|1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for the baking dish||1 cup grated peeled carrots|
|10 ounces longaniza sausage||One 16-ounce bag corn bread stuffing|
|1 large white onion (about 14 ounces), diced (about 2 1/2 cups)||2 1/2 cups homemade or store-bought chicken broth|
|5 stalks celery, trimmed and diced (about 2 cups)||Kosher or fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper|
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a 13 by 9-inch baking dish with olive oil and set it aside.
Poke the longaniza all over with a fork. Heat the 1 tablespoon oil in a very large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, turning once, until the sausage is well browned and no trace of pink remains in the center, about 8 minutes. Remove the sausage to a paper towel–lined plate and drain.
Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the fat from the pan and return the pan to medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are softened but not brown, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut the sausage into 1/4-inch slices. Stir the slices into the pan with the vegetables. Scrape the sausage mix into the prepared baking dish. Add the stuffing mix and toss with the sausage and vegetables. Drizzle the broth over everything, tossing as you do so. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The packaged stuffing can be salty; be careful.
Cover the baking dish with a sheet of parchment paper, then a sheet of aluminum foil, crimping the foil along the edges of the dish to seal it good and tight. The stuffing can be made to this point up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated. Bake for 30 minutes (about 35 minutes for refrigerated stuffing) and serve right from the dish.
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