- 1 loaf (1 pound) unsliced Italian bread
- 1/4 cup cherry juice blend or unsweetened apple juice
- 1 cup dried cherries
- 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
- 2 celery ribs, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups chicken stock
- Preheat oven to 375°. Cut bread into 1-in. cubes; transfer to two 15x10x1-in. baking pans. Bake 10-15 minutes or until toasted. Cool slightly. In a small saucepan, bring juice blend to a boil. Stir in cherries. Remove from heat; let stand 10 minutes. Drain.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook sausage, celery and onion over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until sausage is no longer pink and vegetables are tender, breaking up sausage into crumbles; drain. Transfer to a large bowl; stir in apples, parsley, butter, seasonings, bread cubes and drained cherries. In a small bowl, whisk eggs and stock; pour over bread mixture and toss to coat.
- Transfer to a greased 13x9-in. baking dish (dish will be full). Bake, covered, 30 minutes. Bake, uncovered, 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Yield: 20 servings (3/4 cup each).
Originally published as Dried Cherry & Sausage Dressing in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2015, p111
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