3tablespoonsunsalted butter2 TBS of the 3 cut into small cubes
6ozdried cranberries(or Craisins)
1teaspoonfreshly ground black pepper
1poundsweet Italian sausage
8ounceroasted and peeled chestnutschopped
1/2poundday old Italian bread loafcut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/2cupgrated parmesan
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Add apples, garlic, 1 TBS olive oil, and 1 TBS butter to the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring often, for about 10 minutes or until the apples are soft.
Add ¼ cup chicken broth, cranberries, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Simmer for above five minutes then remove from the heat and allow mixture to cool.
Heat 1 TBS of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Once oil is hot, add sausage and cook until browned, about 8-10 minutes.
Toss the fruit mixture, sausage, chestnuts, and bread together in a large bowl. Toss until well combined.
Add remaining chicken broth and 1 cup parmesan cheese and gently stir to combine. Don’t over mix.
Pour into a 9x9 glass baking dish and top with the remaining grated parmesan and butter cubes.
Bake on the middle rack for 45-60 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.
Check the stuffing after it’s been in the oven for 40 minutes and every five or so minutes after. The bread can go from perfectly crispy to burnt quickly, and you want to avoid the burnt bread topping.Break up the sausage into small bite-size pieces so that it mixes well into the bread and apple mixture. Large chunks won’t spread out as well.If you can’t find chestnuts, just skip them. Don’t try to add another kind of nut or crunch – the chestnuts in this are perfect and other nuts just don’t combine well with everything else.Forgot to leave out the bread? No big deal, it’ll still be yummy – the bread topping may just not be quite as crunchy.Be gentle with your stirring and pouring. Most of the ingredients are pretty fragile, especially once cooked (apples, bread, etc.) and stirring too much will shred them rather than keep them intact. You want intact.If you want to make ahead of time, cook all of the filling but don’t combine with the bread or broth until you’re just ready to cook. That’ll keep your bread crunchy rather than soggy from sitting in the broth. When you’re ready to cook, combine everything and bake fresh.Adapted from this recipe.