Thanksgiving debate: Stuffing vs. dressing

- Stuffing versus dressing. It's an age-old Thanksgiving debate, and one we fight about every year here at FOX 5. 

This year, Good Day Atlanta's Buck Lanford and Paul Milliken decided to tackle the side-dish disagreement, which many people [especially FOX 5 employees] are incredibly passionate about. 

Buck tested out "dressing" with Chef EJ from King and Duke in Buckhead. Paul took on "stuffing" at Cooks and Soldiers. (See recipes below) 

From what we've gathered, some say "stuffing" if it's been cooked inside the turkey, and "dressing" if it's baked in a dish. However, that also depends on where you're from. People in the northeast almost always call it "stuffing," regardless of how it's prepared. Those who grew up in the southern states usually say "dressing." In Pennsylvania, some people have coined their own term, "filling." 

According to history.com, the term "stuffing" has been used longer than "dressing." It wasn't until the Victorian era when people decided the term "dressing" was much more polite. 

RECIPES:

King and Duke's Classic Holiday Dressing (Active Prep time: 30 minutes, Total time: 2 hours, Serves: 6-8, Special equipment: 13”x9”x2” baking dish)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5lbs Rustic sourdough loaf(cut in ¾ inch cubes)
  • 1 cup butter(unsalted)
  • 2 cups yellow onion(medium dice)
  • 1 cup celery(sliced thin)
  • ½ cup parsley(chopped fine)
  • 2 Tbsp sage(chopped fine)
  • 1 Tbsp rosemary(chopped fine)
  • 1 Tbsp thyme(chopped fine)
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 3  whole eggs
  • ½ cup applesauce or apple butter
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper(ground)

Directions: Preheat oven to 250F, place cubed sourdough on baking sheet and bake until bread has dried, approximately 20 minutes. Set aside. In medium sauce pot, melt butter, add yellow onion and celery and sweat until translucent (8-10 minutes). Whisk eggs and chicken stock together. In large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, mix well, and lightly squeeze the bread cubes to absorb any excess liquid. Place mixture in baking dish(13”x9”x2”)and cover with aluminum foil(Pro tip—use pan spray to spray the side of the foil that will be touching the dressing to prevent from sticking while baking). Preheat oven to 350F, place in oven and bake until set, or internal temperature reaches 165F(30-40 minutes). Remove and let cool. To serve, preheat oven to 350F, remove foil and bake 20-30 minutes, until top is golden brown, and hot all the way through. Garnish with additional herbs if desired.

*This recipe can be made vegetarian by substituting vegetable stock for chicken stock, and can be further elaborated on if desired by adding more ingredients such as sausage, bacon, mushrooms, cranberries etc.

Cooks & Soldiers' Stuffing

Ingredients:

  • 2 apples, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted and finely chopped
  • 2 loaves of bread, cubed with crust
  • 2 Tbsp. poultry seasoning
  • ¼ cup celery leaves
  • 2 lbs. sweet Italian sausage
  • 2 cups stock or hot water with 1 bouillon cube dissolved
  • 1 cup of fully cooked giblets, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation: In a sauté pan, brown the sausage until fully cooked. Add poultry seasoning, celery leaves, walnuts, apples and giblets, and mix thoroughly.

  1. Add stock mixture and turn off the heat. Add the diced bread and mix thoroughly until all liquid is absorbed. 
  2. To prepare as stuffing, stuff mixture into the bird’s rear and neck cavities. Cook until done. Can also be served on the side as dressing.
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