Use this stuffing with duck, pork chops or a pork roast, or chicken breasts that have been glazed with a little maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, and rosemary.
1/2 white onion, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1 rib celery, wash and cut into 1/4 inch dice
1/4 cup roasted and peeled hazelnuts or roasted almonds, finely chopped
1 cup bread crumbs, homemade if possible
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
1/2 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Neutral flavored oil as needed
2/3 cup of blueberries, smaller ones preferably
1 teaspoon powdered porcini. optional
Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, film the pan bottom well with oil and heat. When hot, add onion to the pan and stir to coat with oil. Cook until onion is translucent.
Add the mushrooms to the pan, stir to coat with the oil. Cook the mushrooms, stirring to avoid scorching them, until they are tender. If you are using the porcini powder option, sprinkle the porcini powder over the mushrooms once they are tender, and toss to mix in well. Cook a little longer until you can smell the porcini powder aroma coming up from the pan.
Add the celery and cook until translucent.
Season vegetables with salt and pepper.
While the vegetables cook, add the bread crumbs to a large non-reactive bowl, and drizzle with a little oil, about 1 tablespoon or less. Toss the crumbs with your fingers, being sure to oil all the crumbs. If the crumbs seem a little dry, add a little bit of oil at a time. The crumbs should just be coated, but not “wet”. Sprinkle evenly with the herbs, and season with salt and pepper.
When the vegetables are tender, transfer them to the bread crumbs and toss to mix well. Taste for seasoning, and adjust if needed.
Gently fold in the blueberries, and toss to distribute evenly. Taste again for balance and adjust as needed.
Use this for stuffing thick cut pork chops, chicken breasts, duck breasts, or a pork loin roulade that has been basted with a honey, balsamic vinegar, and rosemary reduction.
The porcini powder option is to add more depth of flavor to the stuffing. The mushroom powder flavor serves to amplify the deeper mushroom flavors as well as the berry flavors while acting as a foil to the top notes of the berries. For an added dimension, try sautéing a couple slices of pancetta, cut thick- 1/8th to ¼ inch thick- and diced the same first thing, then removing the cooked pancetta before proceeding with the recipe. Toss the pancetta with the breadcrumbs when you add the berries.
YIELD: This should be enough to stuff 4 pork chops or poultry breast, or a single 2 to 3 pound pork roast.