wild rice & sausage dressing

Like the apricot-wild rice dish also found among these pages , this recipe is for dressing, not stuffing, because it is cooked on the stove top and in the oven, not in the bird. This side dish complements wild and basmati rice with sage sausage. It made a big hit at the family dinner served at Taus Mahal on Christmas, 2000.

  • 4 oz wild rice
  • 3 cups water
  • <salt>
  • 1 cup long grain basmati rice
  • 1 oz olive oil
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 oz <butter>
  • ½ lb ground pork
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp ground thyme
  • ½ tsp ground rosemary
  • 1 tsp ground sage
  • <salt> and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Place the wild rice and <salt>, to taste, in 3 cups of water, bring to a boil, and let simmer according to package directions until al dente, usually about 45 minutes. Drain and reserve. Meanwhile, put rice and olive oil in another pot and bring the heat up slowly, stirring continuously until the rice turns from a translucent state to opaque white. Add the chicken stock, turn to lowest heat, cover, and let steam for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and add the wild rice.

In a skillet cook the ground pork in the <butter> until browned, crumbling with a metal spatula as it cooks. Add the onion, celery, and mushrooms and sauté these until softened. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Combine parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme* with the rice and mix well. Season to taste.

Put the mixture into an oven dish with cover, add a little water if the mixture seems dry, and place in a warm oven until ready to serve.

Makes about 4 cups of dressing.


Prebranac (pronounced as preh-BRA-nats) is a traditional Serbian baked beans dish that sometimes also contains sausages or other meats. The one here does not, as it is meant to be a side dish. With meat, it becomes a meal.

  • 1 lb of large white beans
  • 1 tsp <salt>
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 lb onion, sliced
  • 1 oz olive oil
  • 1 tbsp powdered paprika
  • pepper, to taste

Cover beans with water, bring to a boil, and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Discard water and replace it with fresh, hot water. Add <salt>, sliced carrot, and bay leaves. Cook until beans are done but still retain their shape. Drain the beans, but save the liquid.

Slice the onion in large ribs and sauté in hot oil until golden brown, Add paprika powder, stirring it in for 30 seconds and then remove it from the heat.

Move the onions, bay leaves, and drained beans into a deep oven bowl, add some of the left over cooking water just covering the beans. Bake at 350°F until the top becomes dark brown.

Prebranac can be served either hot or cold. Depending on the amount of water you added, it can be almost completely dry or it can be like a very thick soup.