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Why stale bread for stuffing?

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What's the point of that? I haven't done that before when making stuffing & haven't noticed any problems...

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  1. Stale bread is dry so it can soak up more buttery stock and turkey juice goodness. Also, stale bread retains its shape and integrity a bit better so your stuffing doesn't turn into a big brick of mush.

    3 Replies
    1. re: biondanonima

      Thanks, makes sense -- so I'll do that with my cornbread.

      1. re: biondanonima

        Technically stale does not equal dry. I believe there's a CI segment on that. Stale just means that some of starches have changed, not that moisture has been lost. Stale bread can be 'rejuvinated' by warming. I believe CI recommends oven drying the bread. This was from a episode I saw within the past half year.

        I don't recall, though, why they recommend dry bread. Greater capacity to absorb flavors makes sense.

        1. re: paulj

          I saw that episode too but I much prefer the texture of my stuffing if I let the bread stale over several days rather than drying it quickly in an oven (I panicked one year that I wouldn't have enough stuffing and baked up some fresh bread the day of, and used the oven to dry it quickly). It (naturally) makes the bread taste toasted, which just wasn't what I wanted.

      2. Lightly dried/toasted does the best job according to CI. Toast in 250 oven for half an hour. For my cornbread I make it the day ahead but use as is because I like the texture better.

        1. if i had to guess, it is because traditionally stale bread was used for stuffing so as to not waste stale bread.