I made this dish for Chef Emeril Lagasse in my kitchen. He filmed the segment and has run it many times on the Food Network. Also, Emeril includes this recipe as one of his favorite Southern entrees. I also made this dish on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Ellen said it was the best dressing she'd ever eaten. I agree.
3 - 3 1/2 pound chicken
1 teaspoon salt
Wash and clean chicken. Place it in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Add salt. Cover and boil until fork tender -- about an hour. Cool. Remove skin and bones and discard. Chop chicken into bite-size pieces. (I use kitchen shears.) Set aside. Reserve broth.
1 1/4 cup self-rising cornmeal (I use Martha White.)
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening (I use Crisco.)
Pre-heat oven to 425°.
Heat shortening in a cast-iron frying pan until hot but not smoking. Mix cornmeal and buttermilk. Stir quickly. Add melted shortening. Pour into heated pan. Cook for 20 minutes until brown. Cool and crumble.
(Note: Make cornbread for your family the exact same way -- stir quickly! This prevents the bread from being tough. My grandson, Tyler, loves hot buttered cornbread.)
1 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 stick of butter
8 slices white bread, toasted and crumbled (I snip with kitchen shears.)
3 boiled eggs
2 raw eggs
3 tablespoons dried sage (or 2 tablespoons powdered)
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 cups broth or more
Pre-heat oven to 375°.
Sauté chopped onion and celery in butter until tender. Mix chopped eggs, cornbread and toasted white bread. Add the remaining ingredients (sautéed onion and celery mixture, raw eggs, sage, vinegar, salt and pepper) and mix well. Add broth and continue to mix until all ingredients look moist. I use my hands for this. Pour half of mixture in 9" x 13" greased and floured baking dish. Add chicken, spreading all over. Pour in remaining dressing. Cook for 40 - 45 minutes.
(Make your holiday dressing for turkey or chicken the exact same way, omitting chicken inside the dressing.)
Stay tuned ... next week -- giblet gravy! Yummy.