Southern Comfort Food ~ Big Mama’s Old Fashioned Cornbread Dressing

Thanksgiving is upon us! Where has 2017 flown?

The wonderful thing about Thanksgiving, as most people will tell you, is the scrumptious food–some of which I only get to eat once a year on Thanksgiving. Today I’m sharing one of those “once a year” recipes. Not that it couldn’t be eaten on any other day. But I find it a little labor intensive and with my working and writing schedule, it’s something I undertake only on Thanksgiving: Big Mama’s Old Fashioned Cornbread Dressing.

Big Mama is what I (and all my dad’s family) called my grandmother. My grandfather was Big Daddy (of course I hadn’t read Tennessee Williams when they were alive) and I grew up right next door to them.

Big Mama’s cornbread dressing is the only one I’ve ever seen that takes two days to make and comes out in little cakes rather than a casserole dish full. Each time I eat it I am immediately transported back to my childhood, to our Thanksgiving table. My father worked shift work, so I never knew when he would be home for dinner. Most days I ate by myself in front of the television. However, Thanksgiving was the ONE day in the whole year that I knew my father and mother and I would be sitting down together to eat.

Boy, it was quite a spread. And always with my grandmother’s dressing. The sage and poultry seasoning are what give it that pungent taste that lingers on the palate. The savory cornbread from which it is made is to die for on its own. I used to sneak pieces of it while my mother was waiting for it to cool.

Just thinking about it I can’t wait for next week!

Big Mama’s Old Fashioned Cornbread Dressing

1 1/2 to 2 cups self-rising corn meal

1 TBS flour (I substitute gluten-free flour for mine)

1 TBS baking powder (Rumford’s is all I ever use)

1/4 package Pepperidge Farms Cornbread Stuffing Mix

1/2 cup oil

1 1/2 cups warm water

1/2 cup chicken or turkey broth

2 eggs, well beaten

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

1 large onion, finely chopped

Sprinkling of Sage and Poultry Seasoning

 

Heat oven to 300 degrees.

Grease baking pan on bottom and sides.

Mix cornmeal, flour, baking powder, oil, warm water, eggs, celery, onion and seasonings together well. Pour into pan and bake 30-45 minutes.  Cool completely. (This step was usually done the day before in my mother’s house so the cornbread could get good and cold.)

Crumble cornbread into large bowl. Add 1/4 package of stuffing mix (for a gluten-free version I have used gluten-free croutons. This year I’ve found actual gluten-free stuffing mix!) and enough chicken or turkey broth to moisten. Shape into cakes and put in greased pan. Bake at 300 for about 40 minutes or until firm and cooked through.

Since I won’t make mine until next week, I don’t have a picture of mine exactly, but I did find this pic that is very close to my finished product. (I’ll have a picture of mine after Thanksgiving.)

Thanks so much for stopping by! Hope you enjoyed my little walk down memory lane. Come back next week for another recipe full of southern comfort. 🙂

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8 Responses to Southern Comfort Food ~ Big Mama’s Old Fashioned Cornbread Dressing

  1. My mother used to make cornbread stuffing from the dry cubes by Pepperidge Farm. She made awesome stuffing, and it had sage just like your grandmother’s. I still remember how to make it, but Ken doesn’t like stuffing so it’s been decades since I did.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna Jaxon says:

      Sage makes the dressing. I tasted oyster dressing once–no thank you. Not the stuffing taste at all.My mom put the Pepperidge Farm mix into the cornbread dressing. I guess it gives it more body. Mostly it’s cornbread, but man, so good! Sorry you don’t make it any more, but there’s a ton of other stuff on your table, I bet. 🙂

      Like

  2. daryldevore says:

    Sounds fantastic. Tweeted.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Melissa Keir says:

    I recall the swing shift. My dad worked it and we had to be quiet at odd hours of the day because he was sleeping. Holidays were the one time I knew the whole family would be together, including the extended family.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna Jaxon says:

      My dad always worked Christmas Day. I had to get up early so he could see me find my presents under the tree, then he’d go off to work. But Thanksgiving he was home all day. So special.

      Like

  4. Rumford rules!! Thank you I’m going to bake it Christmas

    Liked by 1 person

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