This is the way my grandmother and my mother made dressing for Thanksgiving and Christmas. There are certainly more "fashionable" ways to make it these days. But nothing reminds me of home and family more than the taste of my traditional dressing with the meal.
I make these the day before so that I am not sweating my time in the kitchen.
Cut bread slices into bite size pieces. Place in 2 9x13 cake pans ( you will need to toss these several times so its easier to not overcrowd them).
Melt butter and all the rest of the Crouton ingredients in a sauce pan. I get it warm then turn off the heat while I finish cutting bread.
Pour the melted butter mix over the bread in each pan. Toss throughly so that the butter mix is distributed over the whole pan of bread. If the bread is still dry you can drizzle a little olive oil over it to extend the butter.
Bake at 300 for about 1 hour, tossing the croutons every 20 min for even drying and browning.
These should come out very toasty and tasty!
GIBLETS AND JUICE:
I start this as soon as the turkey goes into the oven.
Put the CROUTONS into a large lasagna pan (mine is 11x15)
Dump everything in a saucepan, make sure that the neck and giblets are covered in liquid. Boil for 20 min. Turn off heat and let set until cool to the touch.
Reserve the liquid. Remove neck and giblets. Take all the meat off the neck and put into the CROUTONS.
I used to mince all the giblets but now I take the easy way out. Throw the heart, stomach and liver into a food processor and whir till small chunks or pasty (your taste). Dump this into the CROUTONS.
Dump chopped vegetables into the CROUTONS. Toss, stir, mix up ... you know what I mean. Add the reserved giblet/neck broth to this until it is moist. If you have used all the broth and the croutons are not moist enough you can either add olive oil chicken/turkey broth or melt a stick of butter and use that.
Bake for an hour at 325 (with the turkey) or 30-40 min at 400, you want the vegetables to be tender and the croutons to be semi-dry.