This traditional stuffing for the Thanksgiving turkey is well worth a little extra effort!
Tear the bread into small chunks. Spread on a baking sheet to dry overnight.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and grease a baking dish. In a skillet, heat the butter and saute the onion and celery until transparent, about 2 minutes. Remove with a spoon to a bowl and reserve. In the same skillet, cook the sausage and ground beef, stirring until finely crumbled and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
Soak the bread in as much milk as it will absorb. Add the onion and celery, the meat mixture, the chestnuts and the fresh herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Put the dressing in a well-buttered baking dish and bake at 375 degrees for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until nicely browned. (or stuff it directly into a turkey just before placing the turkey in the oven).
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. With a sharp paring knife or short- bladed chestnut knife, cut a 1/2″ cross on the flat side of each chestnut, cutting through the shell. Spread the nuts out on a baking pan, pour in 1/2 inch of water, and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the shells open. When cool enough to handle, peel chestnuts. Be sure to do this while they are still warm. You will probably need 2 lb. of chestnuts for a pound of shelled meats.