Grandma's Spicy "Sausage" Stuffing
1 roll ground sausage style Gimme Lean
1 package sweet white or yellow cornbread mix (check ingredients to make sure it's vegan)
vegan butter, milk and egg substitutes for cornbread
2 32-oz cartons vegetable broth
3-4 large celery stalks, chopped into small pieces
1 bunch green onions, chopped into small pieces
2 tbsp vegetable oil or olive oil
1. Prepare cornbread according to package directions, using vegan butter, milk and egg substitutes (I use Earth Balance, soy milk and 1 tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 tbsp of water per egg). If not using sweet cornbread mix, add some sugar. I recommend making the cornbread the day before, or at least far enough in advance for it to cool before completing the other steps.
2. Preheat (or adjust) oven to 375 degrees.
3. In a large non-stick skillet, crumble the Gimme Lean and cook in oil until browned and slightly crispy. While cooking, season heavily with sage and black pepper. Don't be afraid to overdo it with the black pepper -- the spiciness mixed with the sweet cornbread is what makes this stuffing so good.
4. Break up cornbread into large chunks (not too crumbly) and toss with "sausage," celery and green onions in a large mixing bowl.
5. Transfer mixture into a baking dish (I always use Pyrex), making sure ingredients are fairly well distributed and cornbread is still chunky.
6. Sprinkle poultry seasoning liberally over the whole surface. This is VERY important -- it's part of what makes it taste like traditional stuffing!
7. Pour vegetable broth evenly over the whole dish. Make sure to use enough -- I use anywhere from 1-1.5 cartons of broth. The dish should be almost soggy before baking, as it should remain moist after baking. (This may take some trial and error; it took me a long time to perfect this. Err on the side of a little too much broth, as you can always bake it longer to get rid of excess moisture.)
8. Bake at 375 degrees until the top is golden and starting to crisp (about 45 min. to an hour).
I adapted this recipe from my grandmother's sausage stuffing, and the result is a great balance between spicy and sweet, crisp and moist. It's simple, but I've made this for many Thanksgivings in many different homes and people almost always prefer it to the "real" stuffing.