So, I've never been a huge fan of stuffing. Probably because my mom was not a cook, and it was one of those dishes we only had at holidays, and it was probably from a mix or picked up at Honeybaked Ham, or when I was really little, my grandmother, who was from Arkansas, put oysters in it. Gross. I'm not sure I ever even had homemade stuffing until Krysten and I made it last year.
I have been promising this recipe to Chanelle for quite a while. I'm extremely proud of this them, because it's one of the first recipes I actually mostly concocted myself. I used Rachel Ray's as a guideline, because I think her muffin idea is brilliant, but mostly, it's a Jamie original. I think they turned out really well, and vegetarian, to boot. (Tip: you could make these vegan by exchanging the butter for more olive oil.)
1 9" pan of cornbread + 6-8 buttermilk biscuits, crumbled
2 T olive oil
1/2 stick butter
2 bay leaves
4 ribs celery with leaves, chopped
1 medium yellow or white onion, chopped
1/2 C applesauce, unsweetened
2 T fresh sage, finely chopped
1/4 C fresh parsely, finely chopped
1/4 C fresh celery leaves, finely chopped
salt & pepper
First, you have to prepare your cornbread and buttermilk biscuits. I usually do it the day before, and I use 1 box of Jiffy for the cornbread, and my biscuit recipe makes 6-8 biscuits. Bake those and let cool completely- several hours or overnight. They should be a little dry. Once they're cool and dry, just crumble them directly into a large zip top bag.
When you're ready to cook the muffins, dump the crumbled, prepared cornbread and biscuits into a large bowl with your parsely and celery leaves. In a large skillet, heat olive oil, 4T butter, and bay leaves. Once the butter is melted, sautee onions, celery, sage, and salt & pepper. Once the vegetables are starting to turn translucent (I like mine a little al dente), add them to the bread and herb mixture with the applesauce. Then start adding the vegetable broth, a little at a time, stirring and adjusting the seasoning, until mixture has the consistency of a wet meatloaf.
Butter or spray a muffin tin liberally and mound the stuffing into the cups. They won't rise, so use an ice cream scoop to really mound them up to the size you want them. This recipe makes about 12 large muffins.
Bake at 350-375 for 30-45 minutes. I was cooking at 6,000 feet so everything was a little different. You can also certainly cook in advance for only 30 minutes and reheat right before dinner.