Kathryn Grayson's granddaughter Kristin Towers Rowles joined us for this special tribute!
Kathryn Grayson was an actress and coloratura soprano who starred in several MGM musicals including "Anchors Aweigh", "Kiss Me Kate" and "Show Boat". February 9, 2022 will mark the 100th anniversary of her birth.
This recipe isn't from a movie star cookbook or fan magazine. It comes right from the source! Kristin Towers Rowles said that her grandmother made this every year for Thanksgiving and it reminds her of some of the happiest memories of her childhood.
Southern Sausage Chestnut Dressing
1 Medium Yellow Onion, diced
1 Large Carrot, Peeled and diced
2 Stalks of Celery, diced
1/2 Bunch of Sage leaves, Cleaned and cut into small ribbons
1.5 lb Italian Sausage Meat, removed from casing
Salt and Pepper
5 cups of cubed day old bread
1 lb of chestnuts, buy them prepared
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 large egg
Preheat oven to 375. Prepare a 9x11 baking dish
In a large Skillet, brown and drain the sausage. After browned, remove the sausage and put in a large bowl...then use the pork fat to sauté onion, carrot, celery and sage. Season with salt and pepper. Add to the bowl with the sausage. Then add bread cubes and chestnuts. Stir Well.
Mix together the Chicken Stock, Cream and Egg. Pour this over the bread mix in the mixing bowl. Then pour everything into prepared dish and bake for 35 min.
Kristin Towers-Rowles is a third generation Musical Theatre actress from a musical family. She has performed in many International and National Tours and regional theater all over California. Credits include work as an actress, singer and director. Visit https://www.kristintowers-rowles.com for more information.
Mary Stanford is a Los Angeles based singer who celebrates the music, stories and style of the Golden Age of musical theatre and the American Songbook. Her Facebook and Youtube "quarantine cabaret" series, The Mary Stanford Show, has raised $2,000 for charity since the pandemic began. Visit maryjstanford.com for more information.
The Final Result
I decided to make a vegetarian version of the stuffing and it was excellent! I learned that it is much better to pour the egg/cream/chicken stock directly into the bowl to make sure the bread is evenly soaked. Kristin also suggests dousing a bit of olive oil on the top, which helps it have a nice, crispy texture. Mary and I ate a TON of the stuffing on camera and off.
If you aren't familiar with Kathryn Grayson, plenty of her films are on DVD and available on streaming channels. Seek them out and enjoy!