Sausage and Apple Dressing – More Than Microwaving

The other day, I shared my recipe for Honey Cracked Black Pepper French Bread.  Two loaves of French bread doesn’t seem like much, but we never seem to eat it before it starts to mold – especially not in the summer.  I suppose I could freeze half and have bread another day, but why do that when I can take the leftover bread and make this dressing to serve up with grilled chicken or pork chops? The best part, I do it in a skillet, on the stove top.  That’s right, no oven.  I start by cutting a half a loaf of leftover French bread into half inch cubes and letting it sit out to dry a bit.  Then, I heat up my no stick skillet and toss in a half a roll of breakfast sausage.  You could use Italian sausage if you prefer.  Just be sure you let it get nice and brown..

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While the sausage is browning, dice up some onion, celery, carrots and apple.  Add them to the pan and cook until the veggies soften.

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My ex-husband’s grandmother made the best cornbread dressing.  She always added apples.  Her other secret? Don’t moisten the bread with stock – use gravy.  I mean, really, what isn’t better with gravy?  So, add some flour to your sausage and veggies and apples and let it cook a little.  Then add some stock and let it thicken.

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Beautiful, right? Toss in your bread cubes and give it all a good stir.  Cook it until it dries up a bit and is warm and delicious.  If you want a crispy crust, pour your gravy mixture over your bread, wipe out the pan and heat up a little butter or oil in the bottom of the pan before you add the bread and gravy back in.  Let it cook until your nose tells you it is ready. 

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I was hungry, so I didn’t let mine get as brown as I could have.  It was delicious anyway, and even had a few brown, crispy bits. 

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Recipe:

1/2 roll breakfast sausage

1/2 medium onion

1 large carrot, peeled

2 stalks celery

1 gala apple

2 Tablespoons flour

2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Salt

1/2 loaf French bread, cubed – about 4 cups of cubes

Heat a large non-stick skillet and add sausage.  Cook until brown, making sure to crumble it well as it cooks.  DIce onion, carrot, celery and apple.  When sausage is almost cooked, add vegetables and apple.  Continue cooking until vegetables soften a bit.  Sprinkle flour over the sausage mixture and cook for about a minute.  Add 2 cups stock.  Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.  Taste gravy and add salt to your preference.  Add cubed bread and stir to coat.  Cook over medium heat without stirring until dressing dries up a bit and you can smell it browning.  Serve hot.

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