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Focaccia Stuffing with Apples and Pancetta

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Focaccia Stuffing with Apples and Pancetta
  • Prep Time 50 min
  • Total Time 1 hr 45 min
  • Servings 18
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All the other boring stuffings will be jealous when this one makes its debut on your holiday table! Herbs, citrus, nuts, pancetta and rich stock come together as an ensemble cast that will turn a humble side dish into the star of the show.

Ingredients

Stuffing

8
cups 1/2-inch cubes focaccia bread (about 1 lb)
8
oz pancetta, diced
6
tablespoons butter
1
cup diced onion
1
cup diced celery
1/4
teaspoon salt
1/4
teaspoon pepper
2
Gala apples, cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (2 cups)
2
cups Progresso™ chicken stock (from 32-oz carton)
2
eggs, slightly beaten
2
tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
2
tablespoons chopped fresh sage leaves

Walnut Topping

1/2
cup toasted walnuts, chopped
1/4
cup chopped fresh parsley
1
teaspoon grated orange peel

Directions

  • 1 Heat oven to 325°F. Place cubed bread on ungreased cookie sheet; bake 10 to 15 minutes or until dry and crispy. Cool completely on cookie sheet.
  • 2 Meanwhile, spray 4-quart Dutch oven with cooking spray; place over medium-low heat. Add pancetta; cook about 13 minutes, stirring frequently, until rendered and lightly browned. Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to large bowl; set aside. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat from Dutch oven; discard or reserve for another use.
  • 3 Melt butter with the 2 tablespoons pancetta fat in Dutch oven. Increase heat to medium-high; add onion, celery, salt and pepper. Cook 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. Add apples; cook 2 minutes longer.
  • 4 Add stock to Dutch oven; heat to simmering. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently, using spoon to release browned bits from bottom. Remove from heat; cool 5 minutes.
  • 5 Spray 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray; set aside. Add eggs, thyme and sage to pancetta in bowl. Stir in bread. Pour stock mixture over ingredients in bowl. Stir to combine. Pour into baking dish.
  • 6 Bake uncovered 40 to 45 minutes or until center is hot and top is browned and crispy. Cool 5 minutes. In small bowl, stir together Topping ingredients. Sprinkle over stuffing in dish.
Tips  

To make dicing the pancetta easier, place it in the freezer 10 minutes before cutting.

Feel free to experiment with different nuts, like pecans or hazelnuts.

To toast walnuts, sprinkle in ungreased heavy skillet. Cook over medium heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently until walnuts begin to brown, then stirring constantly until walnuts are light brown.

Nutrition Information 
No nutrition information available for this recipe
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