Read through recipe before preparing.
1 whole chicken (fryer or broiler) OR chicken backs, or pieces. Cut chicken up in serving pieces, or have your butcher do this for you.
Boil chicken in approximately 2 quarts of water. After chicken is done, separate chicken from the broth, save broth, set aside chicken.
In a VERY large mixing bowl I put about the equivalent of two large skillets of cornbread, crumbled.
Start adding these ingredients to the CRUMBLED cornbread:
• 2 cups celery chopped fine or blended.
• 1 cup of onion same as above.
• 1 large bell pepper, same as above.
I always blend these 1st 3 ingredients together in the blender with a cup or 2 of water or broth added. Sometimes, I also brown these in a skillet with a little olive oil or butter before adding to the crumbled cornbread.
Throw these ingredients in the bowl now:
• 2 tsp. poultry seasoning (this is a mixture of herbs with no salt added)
• 1 tsp. black pepper
• 2 tsp. Salt
• Dash of red pepper (opt)
• 1 tsp. celery seed (opt)
• 6 raw eggs
• Enough of the chicken broth* you saved to get the mixture moist…I would say about 6-8 cups.
• Stir well, pour into greased or buttered large (11×15) oblong baking dish, or 2 big iron skillets, or a big roasting pan. The thickness shouldn't be more than about 2 inches to insure the eggs and vegetables are cooked thoroughly.
• Press chicken pieces with bone in (take fat off) into top of the dressing OR use deboned chicken…Some people debone the chicken and mix it in the bowl with the other ingredients, I like it golden brown “on top” of the dressing.
Sprinkle lightly with desired seasonings such as paprika, curry powder, black pepper.
• Bake at 375° until golden brown around edges, and on top.
Serve with cranberry sauce.
NOTE: This is a very forgivable dish, if you should see that it is too dry while baking…You can put it back in the bowl and add more broth…Or pour more broth on top. If it is too moist, just simply bake longer.
*If you should run out of broth, add a chicken flavored bouillon cube (or 2 if you prefer it richer) to every couple cups of hot water.
Incidentally: This recipe may also be used for Squash Dressing, Just cooked as directed in the recipe for Smothered Squash, and add about 3-4 cups cooked yellow squash, and bake as directed.