Stuffing with Sour Cherries

Stuffing/Dressing with Sour Cherries

My favorite part of a Thanksgiving (or Midwinter) dinner is the stuffing. Maybe it’s a treat because I so rarely eat bread… maybe it’s because I love the combination of rich savory flavors with the pop of sour cherries. Anyway, this was a big hit at our Thanksgiving feast in 2019. It’s gluten-free (if you choose the right breads), and can be vegan if you use two flax eggs instead of the regular eggs in the recipe. I encourage you to make your own variations, to taste!

Ingredients:

1 lb sliced rye bread
½ loaf sliced gluten-free white bread
2 oz (half a stick) of butter or vegan cooking stick
2 large onions, diced
6 sticks of celery, diced
½ bottle of Morello sour cherries – I use the 26oz bottle from Trader Joe’s
2 large eggs (or the equivalent in flax eggs, with 1 tsp xanthum gum)
1 cup plant milk
1 cup vegetable broth
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
1 Tbsp umami seasoning, or more, to taste
1 handful of fresh finely, chopped herbs, such as sage and thyme

Method:

1.   The night before or the morning of your feast, trim the crusts of both breads, and cut into 1 cm or ½” cubes. Let them go a little stale in a large mixing bowl.

2.   In a heavy pan over low heat, stirring quite often, sauté the onions for 40-minutes until they are soft and golden. Add the celery, and cook, stirring occasionally, for another ten minutes. Add the warmed broth, and simmer for ten minutes.

3.   Add the onions, celery and broth to the bread cubes and mix well.

4.   At least two hours before you serve the main course, beat the eggs into the plant milk. Add the fresh herbs, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and umami to taste. Stir into the bread mixture, making sure all the bread is moistened without being soggy. Add the sour cherries and make sure they are distributed evenly.  Let rest until ready to bake.

5.   Oil a baking dish with at least 1½” sides, and spread the mixture in an even layer. Place in a 325*, or whatever temperature you need for your other dishes. Bake for 30-40 minutes; if you have a hotter oven, cover with foil so it doesn’t get too dried out.

6.  Serve warm with your main course.

And here is the printable file:  Stuffing with Sour Cherries

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