Cooking with Jonathan By Jonathan Jolicoeur

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In this weekly culinary column, I will be focusing on one dish – giving the reader a quick history of the dish, the classical preparation of it, and of course, my own spin on the classic

This week I have chosen to cover one of my Thanksgiving favorites, stuffing. The earliest recorded recipe for stuffing comes from the Roman cookbook by Apicius “De Re Coquinaria,” which refers to recipes including stuffed hare, chicken and pig. Other names for stuffing include farce, force meat and dressing.

Traditional stuffing recipe

8 cups​Dry bread, diced
½ cup​Celery, small diced
½ cup​Onion, small diced
1¼ cups​Chicken broth
4 oz​Unsalted butter
1 tsp​Sage, minced
to taste​Salt, black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and lightly grease a casserole dish. In a medium pan over medium-high heat, add your butter and allow to melt. Saute vegetables until onion is transparent. Place your vegetables, bread, sage, seasonings and chicken stock into a large mixing bowl. Mix until thoroughly combined. Place dressing into prepared casserole. Bake until heated through and top is lightly browned.

Jonathan’s stuffing recipe

8 cups​Corn bread, dried and crumbled
2 cups​Focaccia, Dried and diced
½ cup​Celery, small diced
½ cup​Red onion, small diced
1 cup​Chicken broth
4 oz​Heavy cream
4 oz​Unsalted butter
1 tsp​Sage, minced
4 whole​Eggs, beaten
4 whole​Eggs, boiled and chopped
to taste​Sea salt, fresh cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a casserole dish. In a medium pan over medium-high heat, add your butter and allow to melt and brown. Saute vegetables until onion is transparent. Add your sage and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Place your vegetables, bread, corn bread, heavy cream, beaten eggs, boiled egg, seasonings and chicken stock into a large mixing bowl. Mix until thoroughly combined. Place dressing into prepared casserole. Bake until heated through and top is lightly browned – roughly one hour.

Whether you choose to prepare the classic, my twist or your own interpretation, remember that food is about bringing people together and that the act of cooking is about caring and as long as your heart is in the dish you prepare, the people you are cooking for will appreciate it (and you).

If you have any questions for me or would like to see me cover any particular dish in this column, feel free to write me, care of this publication. From my kitchen to yours, it is my pleasure to give you a peek into the mind of a chef. Thank You

Jonathan Jolicoeur is a chef at A Tavola – an Italian restaurant on Church Street in Winchester – which focuses on “farm to table” style of cooking. Jonathan was born in Somerville, lives in Woburn and has a degree from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts.

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