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Wild Mushroom Whole Wheat Stuffing with Tarragon

In this bread stuffing, Barbara Lynch relies on thick-sliced bacon and a mix of wild mushrooms to provide the robust, earthy flavors she thinks belong in every stuffing.


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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: makes 16 cups

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  • 1 1/2 loaves whole wheat bread (3 pounds), cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 4 ounces thickly cut bacon or speck, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 6 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch dice (2 cups)
  • 1 large white onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 pounds mixed wild mushrooms, such as chanterelle, oyster and hen-of-the-woods, thickly sliced
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped tarragon
  • 1/4 cup snipped chives
  • 4 cups Turkey Stock
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the bread cubes on 2 large rimmed baking sheets and bake for about 15 minutes, until slightly firm and golden brown. Transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the bacon and cook over moderately high heat until browned, about 6 minutes. Drain well. Add the celery, onion and garlic to the pan and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the mixture and the bacon to the large bowl.
  3. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in the skillet. Add the mushrooms and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes. Add the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter and melt, then scrape the mushrooms into the bowl. Stir in the herbs and Turkey Stock, season with salt and pepper and mix well. Let the stuffing cool to room temperature.
  4. Stuff the turkey. Spread the rest of the stuffing in a large baking dish, cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes, until heated through. Remove the foil and bake the stuffing until the top is crusty and golden, about 15 minutes longer.

Make Ahead

The stuffing can be refrigerated overnight. Return to room temperature before stuffing the turkey.

Contributed By Photo © Maura McEvoy Published November 2006

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