Walnut and Sage Stuffing and…Is Nothing Sacred?

My belt was missing.  I’m not yet completely mad so I do remember it was through the loopholes of my jeans the last time I saw it.  Now my jeans lay sprawled across my day bed, belt-less.

Turkey Stuffing Ingredients

A futile, time-consuming and waste of energy search through my drawers, my bedroom and then the entire house turned up nothing.  This was not an expensive belt nor was it the most beautiful belt but it did prevent my stretch jeans from sliding south and exposing an ugly display of builder’s bum.

My suspicions turned to Arabella.  Arabella is 17 and a self-proclaimed fashionista.  According to her I am a fashion travesty but I can’t be too bad because several of my things have recently been disappearing and it’s not only my clothing.

There was my hairbrush that I recovered from her sport’s bag, my lip balm that turned up in her school locker, my black cardigan that I found by chance on the floor of my car, my mascara that was on her desk next to her pencil case and my beach towel that was in her boyfriend’s ute.  ‘I didn’t use it mum, Fred did’, was all she said when I asked her how it got there.

‘We have towels for guests, Arabella, there was no need to give him mine’.  I love my beach towel and I love how I know it will be clean when I go to use it and nicely folded and on the shelf in the linen cupboard right next to the pillow cases.  Horrifying to go to use it only to find it missing.

Walnut and Sage Stuffing

But back to the belt, Arabella did admit to wrenching it from the loopholes of my jeans to ‘borrow’ it (without asking), but now couldn’t explain how she happened to lose it.  With a toss of her hair and no edge of responsibility she emerged from her fortress empty handed stating, ‘You must have it mum because it’s not in my room.’

Maybe I’ll get a new belt for Christmas.

Yesterday Arabella bought herself a party dress.  At the time of purchase it didn’t occur to her that she would need a strapless bra to wear with it.  Last night when she was ready to leave for the party in the new dress she yelled out from her room, ‘Mum, I need to borrow your strapless bra’.

‘But I’m wearing it, Arabella’.

‘Well can you just go and take it off?’

So I’m now bra-less and belt-less and my hairbrush needs sterilising and my lip balm is contaminated and my black cardigan is filthy and my mascara is soiled and my beach towel is damp and full of sand.

And Arabella is unrepentant.  Nothing is off-limits, not even my wallet.  ‘Can I take your credit card to the Mall?  I’ll pay you back when I next get paid.’

Like belts that never again see the light of day, pay-day is just as elusive.

So Wonderful Reader, do you have a list like mine of sacred things that disappear?

Chickens Stuffed With Walnut and Sage

Walnut and Sage Stuffing

I’m letting something out of the vault here.  This is my very special and most favourite stuffing recipe that I found years and years and years ago in a Gretta Anna cookbook that belonged to my mother.  It is the best stuffing for turkey and you absolutely must give it a try.  There’s still two weeks before I cook my turkey so I made this recipe and used it to stuff two chickens and had wonderful friends for dinner who all agreed they must make this celery leaf stuffing on Christmas Day.

Degree of Difficulty:  1/5

Cost:  Nominal

Serves:  This recipe is suitable for a 5kg (11 pound) turkey


2/3 cup butter

1 cup chopped green celery leaves

12-16 chopped shallots

8 cups stale breadcrumbs (I use 6)

2 cups chopped walnuts

2 tbspns chopped fresh sage

2 tspns nutmeg

2 tspns sea salt

2 tspns freshly ground black pepper

Sherry or Madeira

Melt butter in a small frying pan.  Add celery leaves and shallots and sauté until soft and golden.

In a large bowl mix together the breadcrumbs, walnuts, sage, nutmeg, sea salt and pepper.  Pour in celery and shallots and mix well.  Moisten mixture with sherry or madeira.

Store in a zip lock bag until ready to use.




  1. Sorry about the belt mum. I’m working on it!

  2. How absolutely wonderful that you have the same pert bust size as your 17 year old!! The boyfriend’s DNA on the beach towel is troubling though (not to mention the ute)… 😉

    The turkey stuffing sounds most fine…

  3. Great stuffing, great chooks, great company and good wine. Thanks Darl.

  4. Dear Hotly Spiced,

    I love your blog. Thank you for the stuffing recipe. I cannot wait to try it out. Willing to forego Jamie and Delia’s recipes for your’s. As for Arabella, next she’ll be “borrowing” the ute. Get the belt back!

    • hotlyspiced says:

      I fear the belt is in the abyss. On the other hand, the ute is parked very visibly outside. Thank you for your generous comments xx

  5. As my toddler grows, we just keep putting stuff higher and higher in the house – scary to think what will happen when she is my height, esp as she is already very helpful with my credit card in the stores.

    That stuffing has all my favourite things in it – just a shame to stuff it in a bird – I think I should make it like the americans and cook it separately!

    • Johanna, not all Americans cook their stuffing separately. I much prefer my stuffing stuffed into a turkey.

      Hotlyspiced, this recipe looks great. We cook a big turkey and stuffing at Thanksgiving in November, though, so at our house we don’t do turkey at Christmas. I’ll have to wait almost a year to try this!

  6. Well, if anything of mine goes missing I could only blame my husband – unlikely or my cats – even more unlikely.
    Fantastic stuffing!
    🙂 Mandy

  7. Mia, aged 4 is already borrowing lipgloss…

  8. Lucky for me, Max outgrew his thieving ways a while ago. Now, if I could figure out a way to revive my short-term memory, I’m certain most, if not all, of my “stolen” items would magically become available again. Great stuffing recipe, by the way. YUM!

  9. I was the one who would borrow my sisters stuff…never my mom’s, though. She wasn’t near cool enough!

  10. This Walnut and Sage stuffing recipe sounds amazing. I definitely have to save this for later use. As far as your daughter, I don’t know what to say lol. Whenever I tried to take an item, my mother gave me this look so I had no choice but to NOT go into her room because she was too scary for me lol

  11. Lol, I can’t believe she made you take off your bra! Lovely stuffing recipe, will definitely be useful for christmas 🙂

  12. Belt, ditto. Make up, shoes, bras, camisoles, cardigans, jewelry … I guess we must be cool mothers after all?

  13. Charlie, my eldest is 21 and it doesn’t seem to get any better. Whenever anything goes missing in this house, her room is always the first port of call.
    Lovely looking, stuffing, by the way!

  14. Ha! No, there’s just me and my husband. And he doesn’t fit in my clothes so that’s ok 😛

  15. The stuffing looks delicious! I like the first photo pre-mix!

  16. Dear Charlie Louie

    You seem pretty tolerant of quite a few incidents. Harsh as it may sound, I might put my foot down if I were you just to establish some respect and boundaries.

  17. Walnut and sage stuffing is such a classic and delicious mixture of flavors…one that I’m long for as my breakfast right now after reading your post. 😉

  18. I have never heard of belts going missing, pens go missing, money goes missing etc but not belt. This is new

  19. Love your blog! I’ve got to try your sage stuffing!

  20. I love the addition of walnuts and sherry… yum! Well, I have a 20 year old, so the list of M.I.A. was pretty extensive for a few years.. and yes, when it did show up it was in desperate need of a wash. At present, items are regularly brought back more neatly folded in a pile (not hung up though) and today we both noticed a pair of workout pants are missing. I said that I know I wear mine home from the gym… well, we won’t go there!

  21. Stuffing sounds great! I’ve been on a massive sage kick lately. I’d love to stuff that in an eggplant or some other vegetable, which stuffing probably doesnt belong 😉

  22. tee hee, this is funny, what I have to look forward to in a few years to come. Thanks for dropping by my blog and i look forward to reading more!

  23. YUM!!! I’m not gonna wait till Christmas each year just to use it. Easy roast chicken dinner sounds perfect with this too! Love that it’s got lots, and LOTS of shallots haha… One of my fav ingredients to cook with. Delish!

  24. My little ones love to dig through my wardrobe and steal all my favourite things. Earrings, makeup, shoes…and they’re only 4 and 2…doomed…

  25. This looks amazing, I’d happily eat this anytime of the year!

  26. love your blog always makes me smile 🙂

  27. I love that stuffing! So good!

  28. Hahaha, ahhhh thank god I have no kids YET. and thank god when I do and they are 17, I will probably be far too old for them to want to “borrow” anything of mine. Well, hope you enjoyed your beltless, braless night.. i’m comfiest that way!!

  29. *wipes brow in relief that there are no teens living in my house*

  30. Oh no, my stuff is off limits! Of course, what’s theirs is mine…. I would get payback by ‘borrowing and ‘losing’ Arabella’s favourite things and hold a sort of hostage exchange program 🙂
    Lovely recipe, yumm…

  31. Love your post…..
    My list is crazy…. But the fun part is its me most of the time who loses things….
    Anyways the recipe of the stuffing looks so so good…

  32. As my little daughter is also Arabella, I’m having a major flash forward here! My life in 10 years time is right there on the page, I’ll bet!

    And Jersey Boys? Yep, LOVED it. Man, it was so infectious I’m still singing those tunes a month later.


  33. As a mum of 3 boys this is one things I hope to be immune too. Though knowing my luck, one of them will develop a fetish and raid my gear anyway. Ummm did I just actually say that outloud 🙂
    You had me totally laughing though that she took your belt and your bra! Wow talk about the shirt off your own back!. Or maybe I am getting my sayings worng yet again. On second thoughts, I should have just left it at – great post I am going to drink now! 🙂 xx

  34. haha…I can totally relate….. to Arabella! (I’m a year older than her, so I guess it’s not surprising!) I borrow stuff from my mum all the time (though I do ask..most of the time!) and just somehow forget to return it!
    This stuffing sounds delicious too!

  35. i borrow my mom’s stuff whenever i can!

  36. Fortunately (and I mean that sincerely), my daughter and I did NOT wear the same size when she was that age. 🙂 But I can still relate.
    Great stuffiing!

  37. it looks good.. i like the stuffing.. wow! just can’t wait for it.

  38. I am hoping that I am cool enough when my daughter turns 17 that she wants to borrow my stuff. Gosh I love stuffing. I wis I had a secret go to like this. Yum

  39. Funny….my stuff seemed to QUIT disappearing after my daughter went off to college 🙂

    Stuffing looks wonderful!

  40. haha love your story!! Great stuffing by the way. Just might need to try the recipe out for my xmas stuffing! 😀

  41. haha, that sounds like my mum and I when I was younger. I used to “borrow” her belts and shoes all the time. and now she’s given me half of her collection, so I no longer have to do do that.

  42. Stuffing looks good. Didn’t think yo were allowed to give kids a belt nowadays.

  43. Aww well…at least it’s a compliment that she actually likes your style (even though she’ll never admit it).

    My favorite white dish has disappeared from my kitchen. And I suspect that one of my roommates is either hoarding it or broke it.

  44. That stuffing looks so delicious!!! and I love reading your personal stories!! I can so relate to borrowing clothes while growing up!

  45. My teens wouldn’t think of wearing anything I own (though they would think nothing of running off with my shampoo, hairbrush, etc) so you should definately take it as a compliment!

  46. I can totally relate to your post – especially since DD and I went and were measured for bras. She was mortified that she is the same size as me but then realised the up side – her range of bras to choose from just doubled !!!!!!

    She did offer me her clothes to choose something for A’s Christmas party but the style of a 19yo really isn’t that appropriate for a 46yo to wear to her husband’s Christmas party. I landed up buying a lovely pair of size 12 jeans and I size 14 top all for less the $70 !!!!

    Have a great Christmas if I don’t ‘talk’ before then and everything of the best for 2012 !

  47. i love nuts in my stuffing, but it’s so rarely seen around here! great post and great recipe. 🙂

  48. Sticky tape and scissors, that’s what my little people like to take. Hopefully there is still a while before any of the bigger things go walking.

  49. Sorry to hear about the belt – you should get a new one for yourself!

    Love the stuffing recipe – all the ingredients are fabulous, and the combination must be delicious!

  50. Take your bra off and give it to me! Hahaha! That’s one I had never heard before. Think it’s cool though that you’re hip enough that your lovely young daughter wants to use your things. The stuffing sounds lovely and the chickens look great. Thanks for sharing.


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