I love this! First tasted at Christmas in 1989 in Italy while I worked (briefly) as an au pair. So many interesting new foods and flavours. This one was a keeper. If you are a foodie you will definitely enjoy…
Makes 600ml stuffing (enough to stuff the body cavity and neck of a 1.8kg bird) with about 1 cup of leftovers which you can use to make my delicious stuffed mackerel fillets for another dinner. Another thing I like to do at Christmas is add a little bit of chicken bone broth to the leftover stuffing and bake in a parcel in the oven for around half an hour. Give that similar gorgeous meaty flavour and moisture.
250g cooked peeled chestnuts
130g dried peeled chestnuts , soaked overnight, then boiled til tender, drained
1 heaped dsp fresh thyme leaves (or a 1 level tsp dried, but fresh is much nicer)
1 rounded dsp chopped sage
2 heaped tbs chopped parsley
A few good grinds of black pepper
1/4 level tsp Himalayan or Atlantic sea salt
60g onion, finely chopped so it cooks properly (1/2 a medium onion)
1 dsp virgin avocado oil, clarified butter, ghee or at a pinch light olive oil (all suitable for dairy-free diet), or regular butter if you eat dairy.
- Process or mash thoroughly the chestnuts until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs, tip into a bowl with the onion, herbs and seasoning.
- If using butter, melt it gently. Add your butter or oil to the bowl and mix well. This stuffing can be stored for a couple of days in the fridge before using
Why this is better for you:
Chestnuts are lower glycaemic index (lower sugar) than bread so are a much healthier alternative. They also contain potassium, which helps your body neutralise the effects of eating too much meat at Christmas. Fresh herbs are antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, support friendly gut bacteria and are anti-ageing – good news especially at Christmas!