Sunday, March 1, 2009

Fennel and Sourdough Dressing

Roast Chicken with Pan Gravy and Fennel and Sourdough Dressing

I made this dressing over the weekend to go with the roast chicken, and to use the fennel broth I made from the scraps from last weeks pork loin with fennel.

  • 1 (1-pound) loaf sourdough bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (10 cups)
  • 2 medium onions, chopped (2 cups)
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter plus additional for greasing pan
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 cups fennel broth (from scratch)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • Put oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Spread bread cubes in 2 large shallow baking pans and bake, stirring occasionally and switching position of pans halfway through baking, until dry, 20 to 25 minutes total.
  • Transfer bread to a large bowl.
  • While bread is drying in oven, cook onions in 1/2 stick butter in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 20 minutes, then add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, 1 minute.
  • Add broth, dill, salt and pepper. Stir for a minute.
  • Add onion and broth mixture to bread, toss and combine well, reserving skillet.
  • Increase oven temperature to 450°F and butter a 13- by 9-inch baking dish (3-quart capacity).
  • Spoon stuffing into baking dish. Cut remaining 2 tablespoons butter into bits and dot over top of stuffing.
  • Bake stuffing, covered tightly with a sheet of buttered foil (buttered side down), in upper third of oven until heated through, 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove foil and bake stuffing until top is lightly browned, 10 to 15 minutes more.

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