Cornbread Dressing with Fruits, Nuts, and Mint Marigold
This cornbread dressing, filled with sweet and savory surprises, is baked separately and served as a side dish.
•1 cup dried apricots
•1/2 cup dried figs or prunes
•1/4 cup dried cranberries
•1/2 cup brandy or orange juice
•1/8 teaspoon cloves
•1 teaspoon coriander seeds
•1/2 teaspoon whole allspice berries
•1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
•1/4 teaspoon crushed dried red pepper
•2 onions, chopped
•4 tablespoons butter
•1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
•2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
•1 large red bell pepper, chopped, about 11/2 cups
•2 cups chopped celery
•3/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
•2 tablespoons chopped Mexican mint marigold
•3/4 cup toasted pecans
•6 cups crumbled day-old homemade cornbread, dried in the oven, or 2 packages dried cornbread stuffing mix
•2 cups or more Giblet Broth or chicken or vegetable broth
•Salt to taste
•2 to 3 tablespoons melted butter (optional)
•1 to 2 well-beaten eggs (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Roughly chop the dried fruits; soak them in the brandy or orange juice, tossing occasionally.
2. Grind together the next five ingredients in a spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle.
3. Sauté the onions in butter, stirring, until nearly translucent; add the ginger, peppers, and celery, and sauté until softened.
4. Combine with the fruit and soaking liquid, herbs, pecans, cornbread or stuffing mix, ground spices, 1 cup of broth, and salt, mixing gently. Stir in the optional melted butter and/or eggs; do not overmix.
5. Transfer the mixture to a buttered 9-by-12-inch baking dish and drizzle with enough of the remaining broth to moisten evenly.
6. Cover and bake for 30 minutes, then uncover and bake 5 minutes longer. (If you’re cooking this in the oven with the turkey, bake it for 40 minutes at 325°F.)
Check out the original article, A Twist on the Traditional Thanksgiving Menu.