Two days to go before the great and glorious feast of varied origins, and the food is already being assembled ready for prepping and eventual cooking. In Lewis Towers this is now a truly team effort as we all have our culinary roles and signature dishes to bring to the table. Gone, thankfully, are the days when I would labor at everything. Now, having sharpened all the knives, I can relax a little as Sandi makes her squash casserole and creamed onions, and Kate brings creamy French beans to the pot, the turkey roasting all the while.
My main dish is a sausage and bread dressing. I prefer to cook and serve this outside of the bird as it is crisper and in my opinion (which seldom counts for much) more flavorsome. And I always make it the day before and reheat it shortly before the main course is served up. The recipe?
Three tubes of sausage meat. I prefer Jones’ Sausage, but this isn’t compulsory. Just watch out for MSG in other brands.
Two medium sized onions, chopped.
Three cloves of garlic, chopped.
I ½ large loaves of sliced white bread, crusts cut off and the slices broken up by hand. Don’t laugh, but Wonderbread is excellent for this recipe. Or any cheap supermarket bread.
The zest of one large orange and the juice of two large oranges.
1 Tsp+ dried sage
1 Tsp+ dried thyme
A little canola or vegetable oil.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Roll up sleeves and wash your hands. They will be your principle kitchen tools!
Heat oil in large pan.
Add onion and garlic.
Break sausage meat into pan and cook over medium heat until well-browned. Remove from heat and scoop into a large mixing bowl to cool.
Prepare the bread (as described) and when the meat is cool enough to handle mix in the broken bread with your hands. Then add the herbs and the zest.
Finally mix in the eggs, orange juice and (to taste) seasoning.
Spread into two-inch deep baking dish, cover with foil, and cook at 375F for about 25 minutes. Remove and cool. Then keep it in the fridge until the following day. Remove about two hours before the Thanksgiving meal and when ready heat up in oven.