A Different Turkey Dressing

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Here is a change of pace from bread dressing for your turkey, if you want to try something a little different.  It uses cooked rice instead of bread cubes, and is full of good things like Italian sausage, ham, and shrimp.  If you don’t want to stuff the dressing into a turkey, it can be baked in the oven.  It is also great served with a ham or pork roast.

Jambalaya Dressing

1-1/4 cups long grain white rice
2 sweet Italian sausages (about 1/4 pound)
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) green bell pepper
1/2 cup diced )1/4-inch) red bell pepper
2 cups peeled, seeded, and chopped tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 Tablespoon minced fresh basil, or 1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
Pinch of dried thyme
1 cup diced cooked ham
1/2 pound tiny shrimp, shelled and deveined (or use larger shrimp and cut into 1/2-inch dice)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1.  Cook rice according to package directions until firm-tender, not soft; you should have about 3-1/2 cups cooked rice.

2.  Saute sausages in oil in medium skillet over medium heat, turning frequently until browned on all sides. Cool and cut into 1/8-inch slices.

3.  Saute onion and garlic in butter in large skillet over medium heat until golden, about 6 minutes.  Add green and red peppers; cook 3 minutes.  Add tomatoes; sprinkle with sugar.  Add broth, basil, lemon zest, chili powder, and thyme; cook 5 minutes and transfer to a large bowl.  Stir in ham, shrimp, sausage slices, and rice.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Cool completely before stuffing into turkey.  Makes about 8 cups. 

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