That’s right, y’all!
Thanksgiving is NEXT WEEK!
Do you know what you are going to fix yet?
Did I just give you a mini heart attack?
If I did……..
Well, there is one thing that I know I am going to fix and it is good ole Stuffing!
I have a question though.
Do you fix Traditional Stuffing or do you fix Southern Dressing?
Well, I grew up with the Traditional style, while my husband grew up with the Southern Dressing. Though, I am not partial to either because I love both…….
You see, my mom would fix it the Traditional way and my Grandma would fix it the Dressing way.
So, I decided to fix each one and share the recipe!
First up is the Traditional Way. Rustic, large chunky bread and sausage, with celery and onions and LOTS of butter! 😉
I’m breaking the recipes up into two posts, but because I love you so much, I made a video. Make sure to check it out below and give it a “thumbs up” if you like it!
For the full written recipe, check it out below the video!
Recipe: Traditional Thanksgiving Stuffing
• 8 Cups Cubed Bread (* 9 if omitting the Sausage)
• 16 oz. Sage Sausage (Regular is fine) * I used this to enhance the Sage flavor.
• 3/4 Cup Onion, Finely Chopped
• 1 1/2 Cup Celery, Chopped (with leaves)
• 1 3/4 Sticks Butter
• 1 1/2 Tsp. Dried Sage
• 1 Tsp. Dried Thyme
• 1/2 – 3/4 Cup Vegetable Stock , Unsalted (Use according to how dry you like)
• Salt and Pepper to taste
• Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
• In a large skillet , melt butter on medium heat. Add celery and onions and saute’ until just softened.
• Stir in 1/3 of cubed bread and toss for a minute. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and set aside.
• In same skillet, add sausage and cook until completely brown.
• Add cooked sausage to vegetable and bread mixture.
• Add remaining bread and ingredients to bowl and toss until well combined.
• Add salt and pepper to your taste.
• Spray a 9 x 13 casserole dish with non-stick spray and transfer stuffing mixture to pan.
• Bake 30-40 minutes or until mixture is completely warmed through and top is golden brown and crispy.
NOTE: * Tossing mixture in the middle of cooking time, may help keep bread underneath from becoming too moist.
When it comes to seasonal decorating, nothing gets me more excited than Fall.
It must be because change is happening all around you. It’s a lot like what Spring time does to someone who has been experiencing Winter for so long. Those long cold days that finally see the warmth of Spring, accompanied by the that first sign of new life in a budding flower.
It’s exactly the same thing for me after a long hot Summer.
Those first few true days of Fall when I start to see the leaves change colors with all the vibrant oranges and yellows and browns. The crisp cool air that begs you to grab that first hot chocolate or apple cider.
The thought of those endless ideas running through a little child’s head of what their imagination tells them they can be for that one special night on Halloween.
I think I enjoy all those Halloween movies more than my own children. I force them to watch the countless reruns of Halloween Town, Halloween Town Part 2, 3, 4……………… so that if someone comes in and catches me, I can blame it on them. It’s a good thing no one knows I can recite the entire movie of Hocus Pocus without even thinking about it. Don’t tell anyone I told you that!
Freshening up your front entry way can do wonders for your home. I had majority of the items already like the wood box, haystack, and pumpkins. I added a few mums and the corn stalks that I found at Lowes.
Small changes like even painting your front door can really freshen up the space as well. We used a dark gray on our doors that used to be red. I love gray for so many reasons. The best reason is that because it is so neutral, it goes well with any color scheme.
The silk leaves are left overs I had from last season and can be found at any craft store or even places like Walmart.
The window box on the front window got seasonal flowers as well. I couldn’t wait to try out this beautiful ornamental kale I found.
I have always seen these in pictures in magazines and as silly as it seems, I just had to get them.
I really love the way they look. It almost seems like they could be Cabbage Patch Kids…….. Admit it! You thought about it. 😉
Whatever you go with for your seasonal decorating, make sure to only use things that you really love! Don’t settle for anything else!
A lot has been happening around here lately. For starters………………..
MY BABY BROTHER GOT MARRIED!
We are so so so happy for him and his new wife. We gained a sister, friend, and an entire new family that we deeply care for and love!
Now they just need to start having babies and my life will be complete. No pressure, right? LOL!
Well, Mom and Dad were here as well and one of the last nights they were here, we had everyone over for Sunday dinner and mom made Apple Pie! I have made it before, but when Mom is in town, it’s best to just leave things like this to the “professionals”. 😉
I LOOOOOOOVE HER APPLE PIE!
It always has this Rustic quality to it and I love that she never tries to make it too “fake looking”. Everything is from scratch, including the crust.
Just let me set the stage for you. It’s a crisp cool day in Fall. The aroma from the kitchen is taking over the house as the cinnamon and sugar fills the air. As you bring your fork to your mouth filled with that bite of perfection…….. um YEAH! That happened here that day! The crust was slightly crunchy, while the filling was a thick cinnamon apple yumminess!
Come on y’all, it’s FALL!!!
Why not get in the kitchen and bake you up some Apple Pie?
You know you want too! And just in case, because I love you so much……..Here is Mom’s recipe!
Recipe: Rustic Apple Pie
– 2 Homemade or Prepared Deep Dish Pie Crusts (*You will need 2 crusts, one for the bottom and one for the top. *NOTE: Crusts perform better when refrigerated well. If frozen, make sure to thaw completely and chill in fridge until you need it.)
– 15 Granny Smith Apples, Peeled, Cored and Sliced (*NOTE: Slice no larger than a 1/2 inch in thickness or apples will not cook properly)
– 1 Heaping Tbsp. Cinnamon
– 2 Cups Sugar
– 1 Tbsp. Cornstarch
– 4 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter
– 2 Tbsp. Milk
– Small amount of additional cinnamon and sugar for dusting the top of pie.
– Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
– Take a 9in. pie plate and spread first crust evenly over bottom. Refrigerate.
– Place apple slices into a large mixing bowl.
– In a separate bowl, combine cinnamon and sugar and cornstarch.
– Add Cinnamon mixture to apples and mix well using hands, making sure all apples are coated well.
– Remove pie plate from fridge and add apple slice mixture. *NOTE: Apples will mound up in dish. This is normal and makes for a great pie!
– Cut 4 Tbsp. Butter in half and dot over apple mixture evenly.
– Top apples with remaining pie crust. Pinch all around edges of pie to “seal” crusts together. *NOTE: This can be done by using a fork or by index finger and thumb method all the way around.
– Brush top of pie with 2 Tbsp. Milk.
– Lightly dust top of pie with additional cinnamon and sugar.
-Cut 2-3 slits (1 in. long) in top of pie crust for steam to escape during baking.
– Bake pie in oven for 15 minutes.
– Turn temperature down to 350 degrees and continue baking pie for an additional 45 minutes.
– If at end of baking, pie is not golden brown, turn temperature back to 400 degrees and watch closely for 5 minutes. *That should do the trick! 😉
*APPLE PIE ALWAYS TASTES BETTER WITH VANILLA ICE CREAM! ……….. just sayin !
I hope you enjoy the recipe!
I haven’t found many people out there who don’t love a good Roast Chicken.
I have tried it myself by cooking the whole thing (Thanksgiving Style), just sitting in the pan. Maybe doctured up with some butter and salt and pepper.
Nothing too great. I may have even tried to add some type of citrus to it a time or too, but still nothing that great.
My chicken always had some spot in it that might still look a little pink or God forbid, bloody (GASP!), and my kids would get totally grossed out!!!
So, you can probably guess where the rest of that story goes….
I decided to make it a different way about a week ago and I have to say that I will probably never make Roast Chicken another way again.
This is by far, the easiest way I have EVER cooked Roast Chicken.
First, I took some Carrots, Onions, and some Sweet Potatoes.
I roughly cut them into about 1 to 2 inch pieces. You don’t have to be precise, as they will cook down. In fact, the more UNprecise you are, the better. It gives it a “rustic” look.
Then I drizzled some Extra Virgin Olive Oil over them, tossed, and added a little salt and pepper. Then tossed again.
Then I tossed them aside. Well, not really. More like slid them.
Now, back to the chicken!
I cut the backbone out, and pressing down, skin side down, pressed until I heard a pop. This “butterflies” your chicken.
Before you say, “Oh, I can’t do that”…… Let me just tell you, YES YOU CAN!
I used to always buy my chicken already cut up from the store, which by the way cost more than a whole chicken you can cut up yourself.
My mom tried to show me how to cut one up myself, but I was never interested.
(F.Y.I.: I plan on doing a tutorial later on how to cut a whole chicken up.)
Back to topic: IT IS SOOOOO EASY TO CUT THE BACKBONE OUT OF A CHICKEN.
Just turn it over, find the area that looks literally like a backbone (I do not mean to insult your intelligence).
Start at the top, and going down both sides of it, cut.
This can be done with a knife, but I found it easier to do with kitchen shears.
If I’m not grossing you out yet, read on. : )
I salt and peppered the chicken and then I used my “Herbs de Provence” Pampered Chef seasoning mix and sprinkled it on it.
This is it below. You can also pick this up at your local Grocery Store in other brands. I just happened to have that one on hand.
By the way, this is a great mix to use on Chicken, Pork, Vegetables (you name it!).
Then I coated my Cast Iron Skillet with a couple of tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Put the whole Butterflied Chicken in skin side down and seared it on medium-high heat for 5 to 6 minutes, until it was golden brown.
Flipped it over………
And added all the vegetables to the pan. It may look like the pan is too crowded, but it isn’t. These will cook down and the chicken will cook just fine as well.
I sprinkled the vegetables with a little more Herbes de Provence.
I popped it in the oven for about an 1 hour and 15 minutes and this is what it looked like when finished.
It will literally fall off the bone!
I removed the chicken and the vegetables to a platter and covered with aluminum foil to keep warm.
I couldn’t just let all these juices from the meat and vegetables go to waste!
Couldn’t let the little bit of wine that was left in this bottle go to waste either. (“Waste not, Want Not!) Right?
There was about a cup left in the bottle and it all went into the pan.
I let it simmer for about 8 or 9 minutes until it had reduced by half. Then I added a tablespoon of butter.
Stirred in until butter had melted and Voila!
Yummy gravy! In fact, it was so good, I caught Z drinking the rest of it after we were cleaning up the table. YES! I said DRINKING IT!
Oops! Maybe I shouldn’t have told you that.
Well, he won’t know if we don’t tell him.
If you try this recipe, please let me know what you think.
This is a definite “KID APPROVED” meal.
The sweetness from the onions, carrots, and sweet potatoes cook into the chicken and make it soooo good!
By the way, this is a great easy meal to entertain with or if you just want to share with your family.
RECIPE: Roast Chicken w/ Root Vegetables and Gravy
– 1 Whole Chicken ( 3 to 4 lbs.)
– 2 tablespoons Herbs de Provence, divided
– Salt and Pepper
– 4 tablespoons Olive Oil
– 4 Carrots
– 4 Sweet Potatoes
– 2 Sweet Onions
– 1 cup White Wine, I used Chardonnay OR if you prefer, you can use Chicken Stock
– 1 tablespoon Butter
– Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
– Cut Onions, Carrots, and Sweet Potatoes roughly into 1 to 2 inch cubes.
– Combine vegetables and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with Salt and Pepper. Toss to coat and set aside.
– Use kitchen shears to cut out the backbone of the chicken.
– Lay chicken open, skin side up, like a book. Flatten the chicken with your hands, pressing down until you hear a pop or crack noise.
– Sprinkle chicken with Herbs de Provence, salt and pepper.
– Heat a 12 inch or larger size cast iron skillet on medium-high heat. Once hot, add 2 tablespoons olive oil to skillet. Add chicken, skin side down, and sear 5 to 6 minutes, or until golden brown.
– Flip the chicken over and add vegetables to open areas around chicken. It’s ok if it seems overcrowded.
– Roast chicken 1 hour and 15 minutes or until an instant- read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 165 degrees F.
– Remove chicken and vegetables to a platter, cover with aluminum foil, and keep warm.
– Add the wine to the pan and stir with a wooden spoon loosening any brown bits in bottom of pan.
– Allow to simmer for 8 to 9 minutes or until liquid has reduced by half. Stir often.
– Add tablespoon butter and stir until melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. You won’t need much, if any.
– Carve chicken, set on platter with vegetables and serve with gravy.