Sweet Beer Bread for a Sweet Stuffing
This year, I made way too much food for only two people. But that is okay. I love some of the creative ways to use turkey. One recipe that our household created was butternut squash and turkey Massaman curry. Thai curries are always a house favorite aside from the ever-so-delicious pad see-ew. Of the abundance of food made for this Thanksgiving, I though making two different stuffings was a good idea. This is a continuation from last week’s beer bread recipe. I added sugar to the beer bread, which makes it sweeter than your average beer bread. However, this stuffing recipe is on the sweeter side of the sweet / savory scale so having a complimentary sweetness is okay for this recipe. We didn’t stuff this in a turkey butt either so if you decide to stuff it, please let us know how it turns out. We believe that it would overwhelm the sweetness with savoriness, but we weren’t bold enough to experiment.
So what else makes this sweet? Why the cranberries of course. Cranberry sauce is a staple on our Thanksgiving dinner table. Whether we make it from scratch or plop it on a plate from a can, it is a must. We hoped that the cranberries will compliment the sweet bread, and we were correct. Keep the cranberries sparse if you want to allow for the bread to provide sweetness as well. Otherwise, the cranberries will overwhelm the stuffing recipe. That might now be a bad thing depending on what you are going for.
We mentioned that this stuffing is on the sweeter side, but it isn’t completely without savory flavors. Alongside the celery, thyme and additional seasonings, we also added a little bit of turkey bacon. Because Thanksgiving. The turkey bacon adds some saltiness to our sweetbread to balance it out. The almonds are neutral and rounds out our flavor profile. Usually pecans or walnuts would be a goto for a recipe like this. However, I wanted to try something new and the I didn’t want to add a fatty nut to the mix. I know that almonds contain a decent amount of fat as well, but have you ever crush a pecan or walnut? Your hand is covered in oil. So almonds.
As this recipe was made with pre baked turkey, I used chicken broth with this recipe. Although good, don’t do this. Use turkey broth. Use it with pride! This recipe could’ve had those warm comforting flavors from turkey broth, but no, I was foolish. I was so foolish! Learn from my mistakes.
All in all, this recipe was everything I was trying to accomplish. A stuffing on the sweeter side with a hint of saltiness to round everything out. When you bite into the cranberry and bread, a burst of sweetness enters your mouth like a gusher. I call this the chocolate-covered pretzel phenomenon. There is something about chocolate-covered pretzels that provides the right ration of sweetness and saltiness. I believe that this stuffing recipe provides a similar experience. Want to bump up the sweetness? Bump up the quantity of cranberries. Looking for less sweetness? Don’t add sugar to the beer bread recipe.
If you decide to actually stuff this stuffing in a turkey, let me know how it turns out. Does it add any sweetness to your turkey? Or does the turkey juices add too many savoriness? I bet it will be great regardless.
- Preheat oven to 350º F. Chop onion, beer bread, and celery and place in a pan. Place in oven for 15 minute .
- While bread is in the oven, chop mushrooms and turkey bacon. Remove bread from oven and place in a medium sized bowl. The bread should now be croutons. Toss in the turkey bacon, mushrooms, almonds, and cranberries. Melt butter and pour over bread crumbs, followed by the chicken or turkey broth. Place back into the oven for 45 minutes. Be sure to mix the stuffing every 15 minutes.