Cornbread Stuffing

Breakfast sausage and fennel are two of the stand-out ingredients that take this stuffing from Sarasota's Blue Rooster restaurant to the next level.
Photography By Kathryn Brass-Piper | November 01, 2013


Heat oven to 400°. Cook sausage in large skillet over medium-high heat, breaking up with a spoon, until browned. Use a slotted spoon to transfer sausage to large bowl and let cool. Reduce heat to medium and melt 8 tablespoons butter in now empty skillet. Add fennel, carrots, celery, scallions, and garlic; cook, stirring often, until tender. Add pears and wine, increase heat to medium-high, and simmer until most of wine is evaporated. Transfer mixture to bowl with sausage.

Add cornbread, herbs, and eggs to sausage mixture. Add broth, ½ cup at a time, until moist but not soggy. Transfer dressing to buttered baking dish and dot with remaining 2 tablespoons butter.

Cover with foil and bake until heated through, about 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake until golden and crispy, 20—30 minutes. Serve topped with reserved fennel fronds.

Courtesy of Blue Rooster: 1525 4th St, Sarasota; 941.388.7539;

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  • 1 pound breakfast sausage, bulk or links with casings removed
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, chopped, fronds reserved for serving
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped
  • 8 scallions, white and pale green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Bosc pears, peeled and chopped
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 8 cups dried-out cornbread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped oregano
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme
  • 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups chicken broth
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