Just in Time For Thanksgiving — New La Brea Bakery Stuffing Mixes

Hard to believe I made this from a mix, huh?

Just before Thanksgiving rolls around, I usually leave a cut-up French baguette or Italian loaf out on the counter to dry to make my own bread stuffing for the big day.

I’ve never been one for stuffing from packaged mixes.

But when I came across one that carries the name of La Brea Bakery, I just had to try it.

After all, La Brea Bakery is the Los Angeles hot spot founded by Chef Nancy Silverton that started the whole artisan bread craze in Southern California way back in 1989. If anyone was going to make a packaged stuffing mix worth bragging about, it ought to be a bakery so famous for its fabulous breads, right?

The mixes come in two varieties: “Focaccia Stuffing” and “Harvest Bread Stuffing.”

They are exclusive to Williams-Sonoma. Each box is $14 each or $24.95 for both. And each mix makes enough to feed 10 to 12 people.

La Brea Bakery's new stuffing mixes.

I decided to break open a box of the “Harvest Bread Stuffing,” of which I recently received a sample, to taste test.

Inside, you’ll find three bags containing croutons (a mix of cracked grain bread, rosemary sage cornbread and country white), pecans, and dried cranberries.

You just need to incorporate chopped onion and celery, which needs to be sauteed, chicken or turkey stock, olive oil, and salt and pepper.

What you'll find inside the box.

The stuffing, which does come together quickly, can be baked either inside a turkey or in a separate pan. It emerges wonderfully rustic looking with a crisp top and tender interior. You can taste marjoram, sage, and thyme. The dried cranberries add color and a nice sweetness, while the celery and pecans add lively crunch.

Tasty stuff.

If you’re a made-from-scratch all-the-time kind of cook, this mix is probably not for you. But if you’re pressed for time and need a helping hand, this mix is a good way to ease the load of the hectic holiday cooking chores. And if you’ve only made stuffing from a mix, you really ought to give this one a try.

More Deliciousness from Chef Nancy Silverton: Her Recipe for Her Pizzeria Mozza Pizza Dough

And: My Meal at Her Pizzeria Mozza

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Date: Wednesday, 9. November 2011 5:26
Trackback: Trackback-URL Category: Bakeries, Chefs, General, New Products

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15 comments

  1. 1

    Very useful if you you are swamped in work while preparing the feast!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. 2

    I go back and forth. I’m definitely a make-from-scratch type but when it comes to thanksgiving I’m also looking for a sense of tradition and nostalgia…for me, that often means stuffing with the Pepperidge Farm mix, like Mom makes. Now I happen to be a big fan/patron of La Brea bakery so I’m strongly considering giving this one a try this year. If not the mix, I’ll probably at least start with their bread. :-)

  3. 3

    Will have to try this one. My stuffing (not cooked in the turkey) always ends up really dry!

  4. 4

    Ok I’m definitely taking some down to my in-laws for Thanksgiving this year! My mother-in-law usually uses the stuffing mix from Costco, which is REALLY good but I’m sure this will be even better! Thanks!

  5. 5

    I still can’t believe the holidays are upon us….eeeks!

  6. 6

    Oh this looks just so delicious. I want to make some right now!!

  7. 7

    I know someone who only makes stuffing from a mix, and I’d really like to introduce this to that person! The mix of breads, including cornbread sounds great.

  8. 8

    This looks good, thank you for sharing it!

  9. 9

    I have read so many wonderful Thanksgiving recipes this week but looks like it’s all pretty quiet here in Australia :(

  10. 10

    This stuffing looks good Carolyn and it’s a must try. Thank you for sharing it and have a Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

    ~ ray ~

  11. 11

    William Sonoma sells pretty good prepackaged food. I once tried (forgot the brand name) their myler lemon pound cake mix and it was really amazing (also it was pretty expensive though). This one is helpful for someone like me who never made stuffing… =P

  12. 12

    On Thanksgiving, any time-savers are definitely most welcome! This stuffing looks like a real winner, I’ll definitely look for it at WS!

  13. 13

    So funny, yesterday I had to fly down to LA for work and at the airport I saw a guy carrying a La Brea Bakery bag, and I thought, oooh, I wonder what they sell? Nice to know where to find their stuff up here.

  14. 14

    Ben: They sell GREAT baked goods. Every time the hubby and I drive to LA for a long weekend getaway, our last stop is La Brea Bakery. I load up the backseat with all manner of breads, scones, fruit hand pies and cookies. You have to make a trip there the next time you are down that way.

  15. 15

    Woww, ok. I have to try la brea bakery now!! thanks for this review! I love finding any new to me bakery, pastry shop, etc. :D And…maybe I’ll see if I want to give this mix a try.

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