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Thursday, January 7, 2016

Spicy Stuffing Balls

Recipe and photo courtesy of Mark Short, Mt. Carmel, IL

      Anyone who really knows me would probably also know that my standard go-to dish for any group occasion is sausage balls. I make these appetizers yearly for the Christmas potluck at work and have toted them off to poker night with the girls. I serve them at almost every holiday meal. 
     Over the years I've tried a number of combinations of meats, cheeses and spices. Italian sausage and mozzarella will taste very different than a mild sausage and sharp cheddar. Chorizo sausage and taco cheese adds a Mexican flare, but hot sausage and pepper jack cheese with a sprinkle of crushed red pepper will light you right up. 
    With all of the substitutions that I've done over the years, never once have I thought of substituting the baking mix. However, one of the guys at work told me that's just what he did. Instead of your standard Bisquick, he used pork flavored "Stove Top Stuffing."  This never even occurred to me. But why not?
    He even brought me a sample. Wow, was he right. The stuffing gives it a slightly different texture, somewhat lighter, and the herbs in the stuffing mix add much more flavor. I was impressed.

Spicy Stuffing Balls
1 lb. ground hot sausage
1 lb. shredded pepper jack cheese
2 cups pork flavored Stove Top Stuffing mix (dry)

In a large bowl mix all ingredients. Form into walnut size balls and place on baking sheet.

Bake in preheated 350 oven 20-25 minutes.

Cooked sausage balls can be frozen and reheated for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

Sausage balls out of the oven.

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