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Old-Fashioned Stuffing in Style for Thanksgiving

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Bowl O' Cherries Stuffing

(Family Features) - Along with roast turkey, it's stuffing that's a big part of an old-fashioned Thanksgiving dinner.

"In recent years, we've seen the emergence of Cal-Asian or the merging of French with just about anything - even stuffings - but surveys show that in regard to stuffing at Thanksgiving, `old-fashioned" is the most popular," says Lisa Messinger, nationally syndicated cookbook review columnist and co-author of Mrs. Cubbison's Best Stuffing Cookbook (Square One, $14.95).

Little did Sophie Cubbison think when hungry ranch hands gathered around the covered wagon for her freshly baked bread in 1906 (and years later discovered that her bakery's melba toast made a delicious, convenient stuffing mix) that it was the start of an American tradition.

For this most American of celebrations, classic stuffings are always in style. This longtime favorite brightened with cherries from Mrs. Cubbison's Cookbook is as good today as in the past.

Tips for Successful Stuffing

  • Plan on 3/4 to 1 cup prepared stuffing per person or pound of turkey.
  • When using vegetables in stuffing, sauté onions, celery and mushrooms for mellowness; use uncooked for crunch.
  • Do not use uncooked sausage, pork or other meat.
  • Chill stuffing before placing in the bird to avoid spoilage.
  • Stuff poultry just before roasting.
  • Fill cavity loosely, as stuffing expands during cooking.
  • Stuffing is done when it registers 165° F. If it hasn't reached proper temperature when the turkey breast registers 170° F and innermost part of thigh 180° F, place in a casserole to bake further.
  • Remove any stuffing from bird immediately after dinner, cover and refrigerate. Use within two days.
  • Bake extra stuffing or a different version in a covered greased baking dish at 350° F. Allow about 30 minutes for a 2-quart casserole, uncover, and bake 10 to 15 minutes longer to crisp top, if desired. Larger dishes need more times to heat through.
  • Stuffing baked in a casserole should be made with additional liquid and butter, since it will not absorb rich turkey juices. Stuffing muffins, balls and loaves are other possibilities.

For more tips and recipes, visit thanksgivingtips.com.

Mrs. Cubbison's Stuffing can be found in Wal-Mart Superstores. It is also available in almost all major markets in the 11 Western states, plus Kroger, Safeway, Tom Thumb and HEB in Texas. Albertson's in West Texas.

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Bowl O' Cherries Stuffing

  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 1/2cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 2 (6-ounce) bags Mrs. Cubbison's seasoned stuffing mix
  • 1 1/2cups chicken broth (approximate)
  • 2 cups frozen pitted cherries, thawed and drained, or 2 cups canned pitted cherries, drained (sweet or sour)
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    1. Preheat oven to 350F. Liberally grease 2-quart casserole dish and set aside.
    2. Place butter or margarine in medium-sized saucepan, and melt over medium heat. Add celery and onion and sauté 5 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Stir in thyme and poultry seasoning.
    3. In large bowl, toss together stuffing mix, sautéed vegetables and broth. Gently stir in cherries. Transfer mixture to prepared dish, cover and bake 20 to 30 minutes, or until heated through. If crisp top is desired, uncover dish and bake 10 minutes more.

Yield: 6 - 8 servings
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SOURCE: Mrs. Cubbison's Stuffing

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