o you call the traditional Thanksgiving meal side dish dressing or stuffing? It seems to be a regional thing as is pop versus soda, mowing or cutting the grass, lunch versus dinner, etc. Seems there's a lot of diversity in this big old country. When I was a child, we would occasional be subjected to a young, idealist of a teacher, from one of those elite universities out east. They always thought it would be an interesting anthropological experience to come to our northern Michigan village and teach the children of absent sailors, impoverished lumbermen, and hard scrabbled farmers, some culture and refinement. They never lasted through one of our notoriously harsh winters, but anyway to bring me back to the stuffing/dressing debate, as I was going off on a completely different tangent; one such teacher taught us that the word "stuffing" was vulgar. Oh dear ! We country hicks must have been quite a challenge to her!
Well anyway, so much for that. Now on to Frankenmuth and it's stuffing. When I was a child, my parents took me there. It was as though I had stepped into one of those Grimms Brother's storybooks, with it's Alpine buildings, twinkling lit trees, horse drawn carriages, and even a covered bridge suitable for Billy goats gruff. I was instantly smitten. Then we went into the castle-like fortress and ate. My goodness! What a wonderful meal! I've related before, that my mother was a terrible cook, and her stuffing was probably one of her worst dishes. It resembled and tasted like wallpaper paste with raisins. So I was surprised when I tasted the restaurant's stuffing and loved it. After years of experimenting, I've come up with a pretty good facsimile of the wonderful recipe I first tasted as a child. I know that you probably have your own ideas and traditions of the perfect Thanksgiving dish, but just in case you've been using Stove Top stuffing, here's the recipe:
1 loaf stollen ( a traditional German fruit bread, without icing of course)
1/2 C. grated onion
1/2 C. grated celery
1/4 C. oil
2 tins of chicken (found next to the canned tuna in the grocers)
3 C. chicken broth
grated rind of 1 orange and the juice of half of an orange
2 eggs beaten
1 tsp. marjoram
1 tsp. chicken seasoning (I use Zehnders)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. sage
1/4 C. chopped fresh parsley
Cube the bread. and combine with all the remaining ingredients. Place in a greased casserole (I use a souffle dish). Refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. This stuffing inflates like a souffle, hence the use of a souffle dish. Usually, I cube the bread, stir in the chicken, onions, celery and spices then freeze this to get a jump on the preparations. The night before Thanksgiving, I defrost the bread, then combine the broth, oil, juice and eggs and stir into the bread mixture.
So there you have it, Frankenmuth stuffing. This fruity type of dressing goes well with goose or duck also. Now, I'd like to thank you all for your positively winsome comments on the giveaway post. There's still time to enter, in case you haven't already. Go ahead! Don't be shy. I won't bite. At least I haven't bitten anyone in over half a century!
Speaking of giveaways, our dear friend Marqueta at http://sweetefelicity.blogspot.com/ is having a giveaway also, for her newest Ebook. It's a fascinating story of the births of her adorable children. Marqueta has so much wisdom to share, especially about the use of herbs, I know you will find her little book very interesting.
Update: Here's the recipe that I use for Christmas Stollen. It comes from an old recipe book put out by our Lutheran church's Ladies Aid Society (circa 1950s)
1 pkg. dry yeast
1/4 C. warm water
1/2 C. milk, scalded
1/4 C. butter
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. mace or nutmeg (traditionally they use mace but who has that spice in their cupboard anymore?)
1/4 C. each - candied cherries, citron, golden raisins, and almonds
2 1/2 - 2 3/4 C. flour
Proof the yeast in the warm water. Combine the milk, sugar and salt. Cool to lukewarm. Add the egg, peel, vanilla, nutmeg and yeast mixture to the milk mixture. Beat until smooth. Add the fruits and nuts. Hint: dredge the fruit in some flour first to keep them from sticking together. Add enough flour to make a moderately stiff dough. Knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk. Punch down dough. Shape into a 14 X 9 inch oval. Brush with melted bitter and fold in half lengthwise (sometimes we braid ours). Place on a well-greased cookie sheet. Let rise until nearly doubled. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Cool. Frost with a thin vanilla icing and sprinkle with some almonds.