Editor’s note: Scott Bridi of Brooklyn Cured takes inspiration from the cultural traditions of New York City — Italian-American pork stores, the Lower East Side deli, the French charcuterie, and the German beer garden. All his products are handmade with the highest quality local meats. Scott was initiated into the art of charcuterie at Gramercy Tavern, where he piloted their in-house charcuterie program, before taking his skills to Marlow & Daughters, then striking out on his own with Brooklyn Cured. Scott, a born-n-bred Brooklynite from a big Italian family, brings his Grandma’s stuffing to the Potluck table.
By Scott Bridi, owner and charcutier at Brooklyn Cured
My grandmother’s Thanksgiving stuffing was celebrated throughout my family. We anticipated it as soon as there was a chill in the air. The main components were sweet Italian sausage, Wonder bread, milk, eggs, salt, and pepper. The texture from the white bread was ridiculous. It was like a sponge for flavor. When I was a kid, I remember rummaging through the bottom shelf of the refrigerator to look for it, and eating it cold the day after Thanksgiving.
One year I finally got into her kitchen and made it with her. She shared the recipe, which has measurements in handfuls and pinches. My mother once said that their food would never taste the same because their hands were different sizes. I quantified these measures as best as possible.
In retrospect, my grandmother’s stuffing is a classic example of less-is-more in cooking: like spaghetti with garlic, olive oil, and parsley (one of my mother’s many classics), like a perfectly cured ham that features nothing more than fantastic meat, some salt, and a lot of care. My grandmother’s stuffing is my inspiration for serving Thanksgiving stuffing and gravy at Smorgasburg this month.
So we’re not going to wow you here with Brooklyn Cured’s recipe for pig blood stuffing with lardo and artisan breads. Who would want to eat that on Thanksgiving?
Rose Bridi’s Thanksgiving Stuffing
- 2 lbs sweet Italian sausage
- 1 3/4 lb sliced white bread, about 2 small loaves
- 3 white onions, small dice
- 6 celery stalks, small dice
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- Take sausage out of casing and brown in medium hot pan.
- While sausage is browning, tear bread into small pieces.
- When sausage is brown, remove it from pan, leaving the rendered fat in the pan.
- Sweat onions and celery in the pan.
- Combine sausage, bread, and vegetables in a bowl.
- Whisk eggs and milk together. Add to bowl after the cooked ingredients cool a bit.
- Season with salt and pepper and mix all ingredients well with your hands.
- Bake in a greased baking pan for 20-25 minutes in a 350-degree oven.
You can find Brooklyn Cured ‘s sausages, rillettes, bacon and country pate at shops including Blue Apron Fine Foods, Brooklyn Victory Garden, Choice Greene, The Greene Grape, Sahadi’s and Stinky Bklyn. Their products are also on the menu at several Brooklyn restaurants, and they’re at the Park Slope Farmers Market every Sunday. For a full list of locations, see Scott’s website.
For the full story behind Brooklyn Cured, check out our conversation with Scott.