My mom has a few dishes that are her specialties. Very few, actually. But the ones that she has are amazing. They are perfect, and need absolutely nothing changed about them whatsoever.
So, of course, I’m changing one of them. I’m not saying it needed a change…I just wanted to try adding smoke into my mom’s Perfect Sausage Stuffing recipe. There’s almost never anything wrong with a little smoke. But before I divulge this change, a quick story…about change.
I absolutely love pie. Any kind of fruit pie. It’s far and away my preferred dessert. And if I could only pick one pie to eat the rest of my life, it would be my mom’s famously delicious Cherry Pie. I actually sigh in pleasure as I eat it. My mom knows this, and makes it for me a few times a year…birthday, Christmas, etc.
A couple of years ago she made it and I was my usual giddy self in anticipation of my slice. I sat down, dug my fork in and took a bite. As I chewed, I looked at my mom, who was staring at me, holding back a smile. I quizzically looked at her and asked, “What did you change? This doesn’t taste right.” She burst out laughing and said, “I KNEW you’d notice! I tried Almond extract instead of Vanilla.”
The whole family had a good laugh at my expense as they all enjoyed the pie. I sat, pouting, forcing the altered perfection into my mouth. It was a sad day. When offered leftovers, I declined.
My mom hasn’t used almond extract since.
She has only tried changing one other recipe – this stuffing. Last year. Thanksgiving. She added apples. This time, the entire family was on my side, perplexed and offended that mom would commit such a crime – on a treasured family Holiday nonetheless! It’s one thing to mess with Kevin’s birthday, it’s another thing entirely to single-handedly destroy Thanksgiving Dinner!
Slightly dramatic? Maybe. It was actually pretty good. But it wasn’t MOM’S STUFFING. It was something else and I wasn’t happy.
So I was careful when suggesting a different approach to this family treat. It’s a simple change and one I liked. I simply smoked the roll of pork sausage for about 90 minutes to give the stuffing a smokey kick. If you’re going to smoke your turkey (why WOULDN’T you smoke your turkey??), you really should try this. It’s the perfect complement.
If you happen to have some smoked turkey broth in your freezer, add that in too. We, of course, always have some in reserve. Yum.
So. Give this Smoked Sausage Stuffing a try, but ONLY if it doesn’t start World War III in your home on Thanksgiving. I wouldn’t want to be the cause of the horrible family pain my mom was last year.
I love you, mom. 🙂
Smoked Sausage Stuffing
- 1 lb pork sausage
- 1 bag stuffing cubes
- 2 C chopped onions
- 1.5 C chopped celery
- 1 stick butter
- 3 to 4 C broth
For Smoked Sausage
- Set up your grill for indirect cooking and smoke with hickory chips for 1 - 2 hours, until internal temperature is 160.
- Melt the stick of butter in a saute pan.
- Add the onions and celery and saute until soft.
- Add smoked sausage roll and break apart with spatula
- Add entire mixture to stuffing cubes
- Add 3 cups broth and stir. If it looks like it needs more moisture, slowly add more broth.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes.