1 pound loaf of sourdough bread or day-old bread: $2
14-16 ounce bag of seasoned bread cubes for stuffing: $3
Eggs: $1.49 for a dozen
Onion: 75 cents
Sausage: $2-$3 (16-20 ounces)
Dried mushrooms (1 ounce): $3
Basic: Cut the bread into cubes and let them dry overnight or dry them out in a 300-degree oven. Transfer to a large bowl. Slice 4 ribs celery (with leaves) and chop one large onion. Saute 1/2 stick butter until soft. Add to bread cubes. Season with lots of rubbed sage, salt and pepper. Stir in 2 beaten eggs, and moisten entire mixture with 2 cups chicken broth. Transfer to a baking dish, cover and bake. If using seasoned bread cubes or stuffing mix, follow package directions for liquid amounts and add the extra sauteed vegetables and season if desired.
Dress it up: Soak 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms in 1 1/2 cups warm water until they are soft. Squeeze them dry and strain the soaking liquid. Chop the mushrooms. Cook and crumble 1 pound of your favorite Italian sausage. Drain. Follow directions above, then add sausage to bread cubes. Slice 8 ounces cremini mushrooms and saute them along with the rehydrated porcini s in the same skillet that you cooked the sausage. Add sausage and mushrooms to the bread cubes. Use some of the reserved mushroom soaking liquid along with chicken broth to moisten the dressing.