Last week was extremely busy at school, with little time to cook, even less time to take pictures, and next to no daylight in which to take good pictures. Now, with a little less on my plate, I got to spend the weekend testing out new recipes that I’m considering making for my family’s Christmas dinner and the meals leading up to it. (It also doesn’t help that the first time I wrote this post I closed out of the browser without saving). I tried this chorizo cornbread stuffing back in November, but I think it would work just as well for December holidays. The sweetness of the cornbread and the spiciness of the chorizo are a good combination on their own, regardless of whatever they accompany.
You actually might have an easier time putting the ingredients together for this dish now, rather than in the middle of the Thanksgiving rush. When I originally made this, the only chorizo I could find was pre-cooked (although it looks like that’s what the Gourmet recipe calls for anyway). But usually we can get uncooked chorizo from the meat counter at Whole Foods. Not surprisingly (although I was surprised at the time), they didn’t have any in stock during the week leading up to Thanksgiving. They make it in-house, and their meat department was otherwise occupied in getting everyone their holiday turkeys. And, living in such an Italian neighborhood, I had no luck finding it at the local butchers, either. I swapped in the Italian sausage because I wanted the texture of fresh sausage broken up amongst simmering onions. Luckily, the dish works well with pre-cooked chorizo or a mixture of sausages.
Cornbread Stuffing with Chorizo & Sweet Italian Sausage
Slightly adapted from Gourmet magazine
1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 large egg
3/4 stick (6 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
2 cups chopped onions (from about 1 large onion)
4 ounces Spanish chorizo, coarsely chopped (about 3/4 cups)
4 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
2 cups thawed frozen corn kernels
1 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 cups turkey stock or reduced-sodium chicken broth
1) For cornbread: Heat oven to 400-degrees and butter an 8-inch square baking pan. Whisk together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate, small bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, and butter. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Cool corn bread in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto the rack to cool completely. Cut the corn bread into 3/4-inch cubes and put in a large bowl. (Can be made one day ahead and stored in the bowl, covered with plastic wrap).
2) Melt the butter in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, then add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the sweet Italian sausage and cook about 4 minutes, breaking up the links into smaller pieces as it cooks. Add the chorizo, corn, sage, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and add parsley.
3) Toss chorizo mixture with corn bread and transfer to a 13×9-inch baking dish (or one large enough to hold the mixture). Drizzle with chicken broth. Bake at 400-degrees, uncovered, until golden brown, about 30 minutes.