For our Thanksgiving menus this year, we decided to call in some ringers—fantastic chefs from different corners of the country, with very different takes on American cuisine. We’re proud to share with you updated traditionalist recipes from Michael Anthony of New York City’s Gramercy Tavern, Latin-Jewish flavors from Michelle Bernstein of Miami’s Michy’s, and the tricked-out hackers’ Thanksgiving from Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz of San Francisco’s Mission Street Food. Plus, special guest appearances from Nathan Myhrvold and the Modernist Cuisine team, in case your holidays won’t be complete without some carbonated cranberries. Special thanks to Fishs Eddy for the awesome props and Saipua for the stunning flowers. Enjoy! – Ed.
Crisp your bread in sweet, salty bacon fat and toss it with caramelized apple, onion, and toasted pecans for an insanely delicious stuffing. If you like a dry stuffing, go easy on the stock you add just before roasting; if you like a more moist stuffing, go nuts.
Bacon, Apple and Pecan Stuffing
Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz, Mission Street Food
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 Granny Smith apples, peeled and cut into ½” dice
2 onions, diced
2 cup pecans, toasted
1 pound bacon, diced
2 large loaves of batard or French bread, crusts removed, cut into ¾” dice
1 tablespoon fresh marjoram, picked
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, picked
1 quart turkey stock, or to your preference
Roasted giblets from gravy-making (optional)
Salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Heat the oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat until it shimmers, and brown the apples in batches, being careful not to crowd the pan to get nice caramelization. Transfer the apples to a large mixing bowl to cool and add the onions to the hot pan to brown, adding another tablespoon of olive oil if the pan looks too dry.
- Transfer the onions to the mixing bowl and add the bacon to the hot pan. Let the bacon cook until crispy, then transfer it to the mixing bowl, leaving behind the fat in the pan. Put the cubed bread in the hot pan with the bacon fat and cook, stirring occasionally, until it is crispy and golden. Remove from heat.
- Add the bread to the mixing bowl and toss with the bacon, onions, apples, pecans and fresh herbs. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Put into an ovenproof dish and cover with stock. Bake for a half hour, or until brown on top.
Inclusion options: Add whatever else you want to this basic stuffing, like sautéed fennel, pickled currants, butternut squash, roasted Brussels sprouts, breakfast sausage, etc.