Thanksgiving is a time for family and food so it’s fitting to share with you a Bremer’s family recipe this month submitted by Gretchen Wilson, Tim and Eric’s eldest sister. This family favorite, Grand Marnier stuffing, was first prepared for Tim in 1989 when he visited Gretchen’s home in San Diego for the holidays.
1 cup diced dried apricot
1 1/2 cups Grand Marnier
turkey liver (extremely optional)
turkey heart (extremely optional)
1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups coarsely chopped celery
1 large onion, chopped
1 lb bulk pork sausage
1 lb herb stuffing mix
1 cup slivered almonds
2 cups rich chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
salt & freshly ground black pepper
Place the apricots and 1 cup of the Grand Marnier in a small saucepan. Heat to
boiling. Remove from heat and set aside. (If you simply must, simmer the giblets in a
small saucepan covered with water for 5 minutes. When cool, remove and finely dice,
discarding the liquid.).
Melt ½ cup of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the celery and onion and saute for 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. In the same skillet, cook the sausage, crumbling it with a fork, until it’s no longer pink. Remove from heat and add to the celery & onion mixture. Add the stuffing mix, apricots with the liquid,and almonds (and the optional giblets.) Stir to combine.
Heat the remaining 1/2 cup butter and chicken stock just until the butter melts. Pour over the stuffing mixture and add the remaining 1/2 cup of Grand Marnier. Stir well to moisten the stuffing, adding the thyme, salt and pepper to taste.
Bake stuffing in a large buttered casserole at 325 degrees for 30-35 minutes. If you insist, you’ll have enough to stuff a 21-24 pound bird with a small extra casserole on the side. Note: I usually make just ½ recipe. The Grand Marnier is expensive. If not in your budget, you might substitute another orange flavored liqueur (even Southern Comfort works).
A perfect accompaniment to this dish as well as to your Thanksgiving dinner, we recommend Chateau Ste. Michelle Gewurztraminer. This Washington state wine is enjoyable with exuberant fruit and clove spice notes. Fresh and vibrant, it’s zingy with a pear and tangerine flavors, persisting nicely on the lively finish. There’s a light sweetness for balance. At $10.99, it’s an affordable option for your holiday dinner.
About the pairing and why we chose Gewurztraminer: It’s a classic wine to pair with Thanksgiving turkey and cranberry dressing. This dry to sweet wine has always been a traditional turkey wine, much like Rieslings. With hints of fruit flavors like apricot, peach and pineapple as well as natural flavors like cinnamon, vanilla, honey and rose, Gewurztraminer pairs well with your desserts too. The spices in Gewurztraminer enhance tasty brown sugar and warm caramel flavors. It’s always great when you can drink the same wine with dinner and dessert!
Recipe credit: Gretchen Wilson (Bremer) | Image credit: Food & Wine