Sausage Stuffing

This is by far my most requested Thanksgiving recipe. The smell of the bread alone is reason enough to go the extra mile and make it from scratch. If you are not an "herby" person, you can half the amount of thyme and sage. The sausage just makes it special. Nobody passes this stuffing up. EVER.

Homemade stuffing bread (1 loaf makes one 9x13 casserole):

1 c. warm water
3 c. flour
1 T. sugar
1/2 T. salt
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. sage
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 1/4 tsp. (or 1 package) instant dry yeast
2 T. butter, cut into 4 pieces

I use my bread machine, and add these ingredients in order. If you don't have a bread machine, mix ingredients in a mixer, knead, and place in greased bowl. Cover lightly and let rise until double. Punch down, knead, and shape into loaf. Place in greased bread pan and let rise again until double. Bake at 375, 35-40 minutes. Allow to cool, wrap, refrigerate or freeze.

1 1/2 c. chopped celery
3/4 c. chopped green onions (yellow onions work, too)
3/4 c. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 loaf stuffing bread, cut into cubes (easiest when cold)
1 lb. MSG-free chicken sausage (Adelle's Chicken Apple, Isierno's Chicken Breakfast sausage are great) OR one recipe BREAKFAST SAUSAGE (which is the best IMO)
1 c. chicken or turkey broth

If using breakfast-type sausage, cook and brown. Cut into small pieces. If using cured links (like Adelle's), simply dice into small pieces.

In skillet, cook and stir celery and onion in butter until tender, not wilted. Remove from heat. Place bread and sausage in a large mixing bowl. Gently mix in celery mixture.

Butter 9x13 baking dish. Add stuffing mixture. Evenly pour chicken or turkey broth over all. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

*If you wish to use regular bread, just stir thyme, sage, onion powder, and pepper into celery mixture and toss with cubed bread.

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