Makes enough to stuff a 20-22 pound bird and a full extra baking dish
1½ pounds sweet Italian sausage or ground venison
1½ to 2 baguettes French bread, cubed and left open for 4 or more hours, turned occasionally
2½ cups onion, finely chopped
1¼ cup celery, finely chopped
1 to 1½ cup peeled chestnuts, crumbled
12- to 20 fresh sage leaves
1/8 cup fresh thyme
1/8 cup fresh parsley
½ cup tart apple,
freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon paprika
1 stick light butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup hot chicken broth
A pair of thermal kitchen gloves, like Bluettes
1. In a large skillet, squeeze the sausage meat from its casings. Sauté over medium heat until the meat is browned. Set aside.
2. In a very large bowl, mix sausage or venison (and a little of its pan juices) bread cubes, onions, celery, chestnuts, herbs, paprika, apples, salt and pepper well.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the melted butter and the beaten eggs. Add the mixture slowly to the bread cubes and other ingredients. Toss gently until all bread cubes are moistened. If necessary, add chicken broth a little at a time to increase the amount of moisture in the stuffing.
4. Place half the stuffing in a buttered baking dish, dot the surface with butter and cover with foil and refrigerate until ready to bake.
5. Microwave the remaining stuffing on full power, stirring two or three times, until very hot (120o to 130 o), 6 to 8 minutes. If you can handle the stuffing with your hands, it is not hot enough.
6. Using your thermal kitchen gloves, stuff your turkey or chicken with the micro-waved stuffing and cook according to recipe.
NOTE: All sorts of vegetables, like zucchini, corn and even squash can be added to the ingredients list. Adjust the amount of bread accordingly.