Smoked Sausage & Mushroom Dressing
Feel free to add your own special touches to this traditional-style dressing, such as chopped cooked chestnuts. If you have leftovers, turn them into patties, pan-fry in butter, and serve with gravy.
- 1 1-pound uncooked sausage chub, such as Bob Evans or Jimmy Dean brands, any flavor
- 12 cups bread, crusts trimmed, sliced into 1/2-inch cubes 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
- 2 pounds mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 2 eggs
- 4 cups chicken or turkey broth, or more as needed
Butter a 9- by 13-inch baking dish and set aside.
Carefully remove the plastic wrapping from the sausage so the sausage remains log-shaped, about 2-1/2 to 3 inches in diameter.
When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Smoke the sausage for 1 hour. Increase the heat to 225 degrees F. Continue to cook the sausage until an instant-read meat thermometer inserted through the end reads 160 degrees F, about 45 minutes to an hour. Let cool, then dice into small (1/4- to 1/3-inch) cubes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Increase the temperature to 350 degrees F. Arrange the bread cubes in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Let cool, then add to the sausage.
Arrange the mushrooms in the rimmed baking sheet and pour half of the butter over them. Season well with salt and pepper. Roast until the mushrooms are golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Add the mushrooms and any accumulated juices to the sausage/bread mixture.
Meanwhile, pour the remaining butter into a frying pan. Over medium heat, saute the onions, celery, and garlic until soft, but not brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the sage, parsley, and thyme leaves and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add to the bread/mushroom mixture and stir gently to combine. (If desired, cover and refrigerate several hours or up to one day ahead.)
In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs with 1 cup of the chicken stock. Add this mixture and the remainder of the stock to the sausage/bread/mushroom mixture and stir gently to combine. The dressing should be wet, but not soggy. Add more stock if needed.
Tip the dressing to the prepared baking pan. Cover tightly with foil. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the top is nicely browned, about 30 minutes more. Serve immediately.