This year, I had my first thanksgiving as a vegetarian. Luckily, the feast was prepared by me for only my partner and myself – so there were no awkward moments and no complaints about the general lack of meat.
Even when I ate meat I was never the biggest fan of turkey – so it was not missed at all. But, to be honest, I was worried about the stuffing. I love stuffing. I love old school traditional stuffing. Nothing with nuts or raisins or sausage- just traditional celery-onions-spices-bread, crispy moist deliciousness. Of course, in the past I would use the hell out of the turkey drippings, and man alive did they make for some delicious stuffing.
So this year, being a non-meat eater and all, I decided to make the stuffing vegan. Not a drop of turkey juice to be found. And you know what? It turned out just fine. Obviously it wasn’t exactly the same, but it still passed the test.
- 10 cups, 1/2 inch bread cubes (I used half sourdough and half pumpernickel, but if you are making this vegan be sure to triple check the ingredients)
- 2 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic (2 – 3 cloves)
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 1/2 cups finely chopped celery
- 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley
- 1 tsp dried rubbed sage leaf
- 1 tsp dried thyme leaf
- Optional: 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 – 3 cups vegetable stock OR 3 c. water + 2 veggie bouillon cubes (I used homemade stock to make it extra delicious)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and oil a large shallow casserole dish (set aside).
Toast bread cubes in a large baking sheet in the oven until golden brown and set aside in a large bowl.
Turn oven down to 350 degrees F
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Sauté onions, garlic, and celery until soft.
Using a rubber spatula, transfer the veggie mixture to the bowl of bread chunks.
Add parsley, sage, thyme, optional salt, and pepper.
Optional: Drizzle 1 Tbsp olive oil into the mixture
Stir until until everything is well mixed. Add 2 cups vegetable stock, and stir until it is absorbed. Add more stock as needed so that the mixture is moist and clumping together, but not soggy.
Bake in a covered shallow casserole or baking dish for 25 minutes.
Optional: Uncover and bake another 15 minutes to form a crusty top (this is crucial, in my opinion – unless you like wet stuffing).