When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner most are excited about the stuffing that comes along with the turkey. Since I have starting the Paleo Diet Lifestyle, Thanksgiving and Christmas have been a bit of a concern in terms of still getting the amazing traditional flavours in the meal while staying true to my new lifestyle. When deciding what to use as a substitute for normal white or whole wheat bread for my standard stuffing I new exactly which one to use the Gluten-Free Paleo Loaf. Making it a few days in advance and leaving it out to get stale side worked wonders. Everything else in the recipe is the same as the traditional stuffing that our grand parents before us made. One note to add, when it came to using the chicken broth. Usually I started the stuffing just as the turkey was finished seeing how the stuffing does not take long to make and the turkey need to cool a bit before slicing. Try using 1 cup of turkey drippings/juice instead of the chicken broth. This works great if you do not have homemade paleo chicken broth on hand and do not want all the added sodium and ingredients in store bought broth. It really helps bring out the flavours we associate with Thanksgiving.
6 1/2 cups of Gluten-Free Paleo Loaf, cubed, about 1 loaf
1/2 pound pancetta, diced
1 cup yellow onion, diced; about 1 medium yellow onion
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 leak, cleaned and thinly sliced
3 tbsp parsley, finely minced
1 tbsp thyme, finely minced
1 tbsp sage, finely minced
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1/2 tbsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 cup chicken broth, homemade and paleo
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Cranberries, dried or fresh
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Grease a oven safe baking dish, 9 x 13 is what I have used but can use almost any size, set aside.
- In a single layer, place the bread cubes on two sheet pans and bake for 10 minutes, or until barely toasted. Remove and set aside.
- In a large sauté pan, cook the pancetta over medium-high heat, being sure to stir regularly, for about 7 minutes, or until slightly browned and crispy. Transfer to paper towels to drain. There will be a few tablespoons of grease from the pancetta. Use this to cook the vegetables. If for some reason your pancetta is super lean, you might want to add a teaspoon of paleo friendly cooking fat. Bring heat down to medium, and add the diced onion, sliced celery, sliced leek, salt and pepper, and cook until all is softened and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the sage and thyme and cook just until fragrant.
- Turn off the heat and add pancetta, mix. Toasted bread crumbs in to vegetable mixture, mix. Add chicken broth slowly to the vegetable mixture while toss.
- Taste to see if sea salt needs to be added. Add the slightly beaten eggs and mix once more.
- Transfer the mixture in to pre greased oven safe baking dish, press into baking dish fairly firm, be sure not to turn the stuffing to mush.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until top is browned. To remove, cut in to squares and remove with spatcula or use a spoon to scoop out of baking dish. Serve warm.