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Adapted from Gourmet magazine, November 2008
Serves 4-6 {This recipe can easily be doubled for a big crowd}

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 cups cubed white sandwich bread, crusts removed
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups sliced leeks {white & light green parts}
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped thyme leaves
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled & diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper {to taste}
  • 1/2 lb  fresh roasted chestnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley

PREP

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lay the cubed bread out on a baking sheet & bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until mostly dried. As an alternative, you can also leave the bread out at room temperature for 24 hours to let it dry. Transfer to a mixing bowl & set aside.
  2. Raise the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the leeks & celery. Cover & cook, stirring occasionally for about 8 minutes, or until the leeks are tender. Add in the thyme leaves, apple, salt & pepper. Cook, covered, for an additional 5 minutes.
  3. Add the leek mixture to the mixing bowl with the bread. Stir in the chestnuts, cream & parsley. Check for seasoning & add a bit more salt & pepper, as desired.
  4. Transfer the stuffing to a buttered casserole dish & bake for 20 minutes, or until heated through & the top is golden brown {For a larger batch, increase the cooking time to 30 minutes}.