Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Yield: Serves 2 - 4.
- 3 slices white bread; crust removed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)*
- 8 dried figs; stem removed and cut in quarters
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter; melted
- 3/4 tsp. rubbed sage; divided
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme; divided
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Pinch of ground pepper
- 2 oz. country sausage
- 1/2 sm. stalk celery; coarsely chopped (about 2 Tbsp.)
- 1/2 sm. onion; coarsely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
- 1/2 sm. pear; peeled, cored and coarsely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
- 1 garlic clove; finely chopped
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Place figs in a small pot, add 1/2 cup chicken broth and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Set aside to rehydrate.
3. Toss bread in a bowl with 1/2 teaspoon sage, 1/4 teaspoon thyme, salt and pepper. Drizzle with 1/2 of melted butter and toss again. Drizzle with remaining melted butter and toss again.
4. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet, and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown - about 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.
5. Crumble sausage into a medium skillet, place skillet over medium heat and cook sausage until just done - about 5 minutes. Remove sausage to a paper towel with a slotted spoon to drain.
5. Add celery, onion 1/4 teaspoon sage, 1/4 teaspoon thyme and a pinch of salt and pepper to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions begin to brown (you may need to add a bit of butter) - about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook 1 minute longer.
6. In a large bowl combine bread, vegetable mixture, figs (and soaking liquid), sausage and pears. Add 1/2 cup chicken broth, salt and pepper and toss to mix. Allow to sit for 10 minutes to fully absorb the broth. If you like a moister stuffing add more broth.
7. Scoop stuffing into a 1 quart baking dish and cover tightly with foil.
8. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove foil and cook another 15 minutes.
*Note 1: I recommend Pepperidge Farm Country White Bread. It's a sturdy bread that holds up well in stuffing. I also sometimes substitute a slice of Pepperidge Farm Whole Wheat for a slice of white.