Friday, November 15, 2013

The Weekly Open Thread: The Right Stuff(ing)

Posted By on Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 5:58 AM

Apparently royalty-free stock photo providers arent concerned about the evils of stuffing.
  • Apparently royalty-free stock photo providers aren't concerned about the evils of stuffing.
As Thanksgiving approaches, I've been reminiscing about my absolute favorite Turkey Day food memory — my late mother's stuffing. All I know for sure is that there were lots of walnuts, sauteed onions and stale challah crumbs involved. And it was cooked inside the turkey. It was so nutty and delightful. Sadly, none of my relatives seems to have the actual recipe. My sister has attempted to re-create it, with good results. But it's not quite the same.

Of course, there are countless variations on stuffing (or dressing, the term more frequently used when it's cooked outside of the turkey). Here are a couple of questions to get this party started:

1.) Do you concur with my semantic analysis — that the difference between stuffing and dressing is that stuffing is cooked inside the bird? (Some online sources suggest that if you're in the South, it's all dressing, no matter where it's cooked.)

2.) Do you prefer your stuffing/dressing cooked in the bird or out?

3.) Finally, if you prefer it cooked outside of the bird, is it because of concerns over salmonella? My family and I survived several decades of in-bird stuffing without a single case of food-poisoning of any kind. But these days, it seems the health experts say no to in-the-bird stuffing.

And on an interesting aside, I found this recipe for stuffing cooked in the bird, from Alton Brown. Then I found this rant on the evils of stuffing cooked in the bird — also from Alton Brown! Guess the salmonella police got to him too, sometime in the mid-Aughts, apparently.

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