16 ounces bread cubes (Pepperidge Farm)
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound (5 links) sweet spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 large onion or 4 small onions (white or Vidalia)
2 cups chopped celery (about 6-8 stalks)
1 large Leeks, well washed and diced
3 large carrots, peeled, washed and diced
6 scallions, sliced into rounds
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 large basket or 2 small baskets of mushrooms, washed and cut up
1 1/2 tablespoons Poultry Seasoning (or more to taste)
1 tablespoon dried minced onions/onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon sea salt or more to taste (add at the end only if needed)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine optional — (sub with 1/4 cup of broth)
3 cups chicken stock, heated
2 egg lightly whisked
1 and 1/2 cups diced apple (either Granny Smith or Gala)
1/4 cup of grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1. In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat. Cook the sausages, ¼ of the onions, and minced garlic over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until browned and cooked through, breaking up the sausage with a fork while cooking. Remove from pan and set aside.
2. In the same pan, melt the butter and add the onions, celery, garlic, parsley, minced dried onions, leeks, carrots, and scallions. Sauté over medium heat for 10 minutes and add the poultry seasoning and diced apples. Continue to sauté until the vegetables are softened (about an additional 15-20 minutes). Add the wine (if using) and allow the wine to reduce down to half (about 4 minutes).
3. In a medium sauté pan, heat the remaining olive oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms and over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until browned. Sprinkle with ½ teaspoon of garlic powder. Remove from pan and set aside.
4. In a large mixing bowl mix the bread cubes, sautéed vegetables, cooked sausage, and sautéed mushrooms. Mix until bread cubes are thoroughly combined with the sautéed vegetables, mushrooms, and sausage. Add 2 beaten eggs and continue to mix well. Next, begin adding the hot chicken broth to the mixture and mix. Continue to add the broth until the mixture is very wet, but not watery. Stir in Pecorino Romano cheese and taste for proper seasoning. At this point, add additional salt, pepper, and/or garlic power as desired.
4. Pour mixture into a well-greased baking dish, cover (either with lid or foil), and bake at 350 degrees for 40-60 minutes until fully cooked and hot in the center.