Ask Jen about nuts


By authoring this little piece of Around The Table, I get asked a lot of random questions by friends and family members. This week, I’m throwing my cousin under the bus. She texted me several weeks ago asking if I remembered a recipe that our Great Aunt used to make when we were children.

Nope. No, I don’t remember. We were like 10. I ‘cooked’ cereal when I was 10.

So ‘Miss D.’ (I promised to protect my cousin’s anonymity) reminded me how much stuffing was leftover when our giant family had Thanksgiving together.

None. Not even a crumb.

We ate the heck out of that stuffing. Literally, not a morsel left. In preparation for cooking this year’s feast for her husband’s extended family of 17 plus her own five (good luck with that one, toots), she’s anticipating the need for more stuffing than both birds will hold (not to mention, having enough for leftovers).

Eons ago when we were kids, Friday’s meal was almost the same as Thursday’s meal, but Aunt Grace made fresh biscuits, more stuffing and typically, a second pumpkin pie because she was awesome. Us kids spent Black Friday with her while our parents went out shopping (or at least our moms … our dads spent the day in the garage working on so-and-so’s car and drinking apple cider).

walnutsIn remembering Aunt Grace’s Black Friday stuffing, we put our heads together and found a recipe that we feel comes the closest to what she cooked years ago. Miss D. and I remember walnuts and cranberries, and we think there were apples in there, too. There was definitely celery … we both remember picking it out.

Great Aunt Grace didn’t really have a cookbook to look through, but her note cards were passed down to Miss D.’s mom who couldn’t even remember Grace’s Friday stuffing. Maybe she spent those Fridays working on that car.

Go make something awesome,

Black Friday Stuffing

cracking walnuts1 sweet onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
4 Tbsp. butter
1 loaf day-old wheat bread
1 loaf day-old seasoned stuffing bread, or 1 (14 oz.) package seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp. parsley flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 tsp. poultry, optional
1/2 tsp. dried sage, optional
1 small green apple, cored, chopped
1/2 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
3 cups chicken broth
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp. light brown sugar

Tear each piece of bread into 2-inch pieces, place in a large bowl and set aside (include bread crumbs, if using). In a skillet, saute the onions and celery until tender; pour the mixture over the bread. Mix lightly, adding walnuts, parsley, seasonings, apple and cranberries. In a bowl, combine chicken broth with beaten egg and light brown sugar; mix together and pour over bread mixture. Combine until bread is moistened; place in a greased casserole and sprinkle with more seasonings, if desired. Cover and bake at 325° for 45 minutes, then uncover and continue baking for additional 15-20 minutes, until the top is browned and slightly crispy. Serve with Thanksgiving leftovers.

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