Monday, November 16, 2009

Not Your Grandmother’s Stuffing

By Pat Tanner

We cooks never know where our next good recipe will come from. Usual sources include a neighbor or co-worker, the Internet or television, a new cookbook, or a magazine or newspaper column. But a tourism calendar? Not so much.

Yet this stuffing recipe, from a calendar my neighbor presented to me last winter as a thank-you gift for collecting her mail while she lounged on the pink sands of Bermuda, captured my attention. I tested it and pass along the recipe for a couple of reasons.

One, you may be among the many who do not make turkey for Thanksgiving, either because you don’t like the taste or because the size of your gathering calls for a smaller bird. This stuffing is a perfect complement to chicken, duck, game hen, or other fowl.

Two, I suspected that the tropical flavor of mango mixed with fluffy white rice had major potential to produce a lighter, brighter alternative to traditional bread stuffing. And, boy, was I right.

The stuffing can be made ahead of time (just refrigerate, covered, until you’re ready to stuff and roast the bird). And it couldn’t be easier. If you can cook rice and peel a mango you’re good to go. (If you’re hesitant about peeling and cutting mangoes, which can be tricky, google “how to cut a mango” for a slew of step-by-step video instructions.)

Bermuda Mango Rice Stuffing
Adapted from 2009 Bermuda Calendar, Tropic Traders Ltd. (Hamilton, Bermuda)

To stuff a 4-pound chicken or duck:

2 large or 3 small ripe mangoes
4 cups cooked rice, cold or room temperature (made from about 1-1/3 cups raw rice)
3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
1 tablespoon finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
2 teaspoons finely chopped thyme
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Salt & pepper to taste
2 whole cloves

Peel mangoes, remove stones, and mash to a pulp. (I used a food processor.) Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Chill for several hours to blend the flavors. Remove the cloves just before stuffing the bird. Stuff and roast as usual. (Heat any extra stuffing in an ovenproof bowl, covered, alongside the bird.)

No comments: