There is something magical about tasting the first bite of Thanksgiving stuffing – especially when it’s pulled fresh from the oven. The warm, savory flavors swirl around my pallet; a teaser for more enticing things to come. This year, we’ll be serving up a savory stuffing made with cranberries, toasted nuts, apples, celery, carrot, shallots, quinoa and steel cut oats: a twist on a traditional combination.
I have to confess that in testing my Thanksgiving stuffing recipe, completely out of habit, I started assembling ingredients from around our kitchen: tasty bites that I regularly use to make stuffing — nuts, some kind of grain or wild rice, fresh herbs, bread to toast and make into breadcrumbs…
As I removed the toasted bread from the oven, a thought hit me like a ton of bricks.
Hold your horses woman! Breadcrumbs?
The low-sodium energy flow came to a screaming halt.
Rewind the breadcrumb idea (because often, [processed] bread can be a hidden source of sodium).
…and mid-way through cooking, I re-designed my whole stuffing recipe. So much for mis en place (having everything in place/set up).
The final taste bite was delightful; my surprisingly satisfying creation shifted my best intentions — the “one fork taste” somehow shifted into a half-empty bowl. Good thing it wasn’t really Thanksgiving.
Please note that this recipe probably isn’t the kind of stuffing that I’d want to put inside a turkey, simply because the quinoa is pretty small. It seems like it would be a lot of work to dig out all of the small bites before carving up the turkey. We made this in a casserole dish and the stuffing came out fluffy, as quinoa should. If you want to read more about quinoa, click here to read our blog post on Peruvian Quinoa Fields.