Wild Rice Dressing

This dish has been a family Thanksgiving tradition for my sister and her family for years. She got her recipe from the Packwood Cookbook which is pretty popular in southeast Iowa. I have made a few changes from the original recipe. –Rory

1 Cup Lundberg Wild Blend Rice
1-1/2 lbs of ground pork
2 Tbsp Rory Brown Sausage Blend
1/2 Cup chopped onion
3/4 Cup chopped celery
1 oz. European Blend dried mushrooms
1 Cup milk
1 –  10.5 oz. can cream of celery soup
1 –  10.5 oz. can cream of mushroom soup
2 tsp dried Parsley Leaf
1/2 tsp Roasted Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Turmeric
1/4 tsp Thyme
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
3 Cups stuffing bread, cubed

First, you’ll want to re-hydrate your dried mushrooms by placing them in a heatproof bowl and pouring boiling water over them to cover the mushrooms with about 1 inch of water. Allow them sit and soak for at least 20 minutes.

Cook the wild rice according to package directions. This stuff takes about 50 minutes to cook, so you will have time to get the rest of the ingredients ready. Strain the water off the mushrooms reserving the water. Chop up the re-hydrated mushrooms to your liking. I use a handy chopper for this.

While the rice is cooking, brown the ground pork with the onion, celery and Rory Brown Sausage blend until pork is cooked through and the onion and celery are softened. Add the chopped mushrooms and allow pork mixture to cook just a little bit longer. Drain off the pan drippings and transfer the pork mixture to a large mixing bowl.

When the rice is done cooking, add it to the pork mixture, along with the canned soups, milk, parsley, roasted garlic powder, turmeric, thyme, salt, and pepper. Mix together well before adding the bread cubes. Once the bread is all coated with the wild rice-pork mixture, transfer to a crockpot or other slow cooker and cook, on low, for 3 or 4 hours before serving.

Note: You can use some of the reserved water from the mushrooms in place of some of the milk if you like. It will add a richer mushroom flavor to the dish.