Monday, November 17, 2008

Do NOT put this inside a dead bird

I heard a rumor that Thanksgiving is approaching. Which seems pretty ridiculous, you know, because I could have sworn that it's still September. Early October at the latest. But, I looked at the calendar and it's true: Thanksgiving is next week. Insanity, I tell you.

Guess I'd better get thinking about food.

Interestingly, for someone who loves to cook and for a holiday completely centered around an enormous meal, I really don't like Thanksgiving dinner. It's all so geriatric cafeteria. Turkey? Bleh. Don't even get me started on gravy: it's slop. Cranberry sauce? Sweet potatoes with marshmallows? Are you joking?! But: I really like green bean casserole, the kind with cream of mushroom soup and those divine french-fried onions. And stuffing. I. love. stuffing.

In truth, I'm a food snob, kinda. I'm fully committed to things like fresh herbs and unsalted butter and homemade marinara and mincing my own garlic. Stuff like that. But my favorite stuffing is a far cry from any of that. It is comfort food. And it is heavenly.

The stuffing we make is a recipe from my Grandma Klages, a Depression-era German farmwife extraordinaire. Actually, the recipe came from one of her friends, I think. We make, like, quadruple recipes because it's so scrumptious. (Frequently I only eat this and the Green Bean Delight.) And you will notice that it does not call for real butter. Nope. It calls for "oleo," which is how my grandmother referred to margarine. Actually, the full name was "oleomargarine." Old School, man. Anyway, despite my uppity food ways, I have never used butter in this recipe.

Please also note that this stuffing does not get stuffed into a bird. That is a repulsive practice, as far as I'm concerned. (Seriously: shoving mushy bread up a dead bird's butt?! Who thought of this?) I actually physically gagged the first time I had stuffing that had actually been cooked inside a carcass: so goopy, so funky, so... ugh. Technically, I guess, this is "dressing" rather than "stuffing." Stuff, if you must. But you do so at your own risk. I will not stuff, and will stubbornly continue to call this "stuffing."

And a final note: it's a pretty loose recipe. I think most of the measurements are just estimates that have been written down over the years. It has not been refined in a test kitchen or written according to formula. You just kind of make it however seems right.

So here it is:
The Best Stuffing That Was Never Stuffed
1 package breadcrumbs (8 oz)
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stick oleo
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 cups chicken broth (in my experience, it needs more so it doesn't get dry)
1 cup milk
2 eggs
Poultry seasoning, or sage (it doesn't say how much. Maybe a teaspoon? More?)

Cook oleo, celery, and onion. Add salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning. Mix with breadcrumbs. Mix broth, milk, and eggs together. Stir into bread mixture. Bake in a 9x13 pan at 350 degrees for about an hour.

Now I must go find a turkey, I suppose. I still can't believe Thanksgiving is next week. Seriously, I'm so lucky I don't live in Canada, because if I'd had to be ready for Thanksgiving a month ago, I'd have been completely hosed.

[Oh, and I'm contributing this to Mr. Lady's call for Thanksgiving recipes at
Whiskey in My Sippy Cup, which was one of the very first blogs I ever started reading and it is awesome. Seriously, I'm a complete blogging amateur and am totally unworthy of putting anything up there, but I'm just gonna suck it up and do it. (And she does live in Canada, by the way.)]


  1. Oh, shut UP! I'm totally an amateur, too! :)

    Um, I don't mean to toot my own horn, but this recipe is the best green bean casserole you will EVER eat. Ever. I'm not kidding.


    Try it, you'll like it.

  2. (Sorry, you have to scroll WAY the heck down for it)

  3. I do believe I'll have to surprise my hubby w/ his g-ma's stuffing recipe!! =) It is surprisingly similar to my mom's recipe which I just love!

    Many of MIL's recipes call for oleo... it always makes me laugh =) I(heart)the internet. Not a soul has heard of it around here!


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