Thursday, July 31, 2014

We be Jammin'! Jambalaya Recipe

Not long ago, I tweeted that I was about to make healthy jambalaya that rivaled the less-healthy version at the local Creole-Cajun place. We'd already gobbled it entirely when I got a few requests for the recipe. Happy to oblige.

based on Emeril Lagasse's recipe

Brown and drain, then set aside

4 to 6 ounces (cooked weight) hot Italian poultry sausage

We brown the whole pound and freeze what we don't use, since it's great on pizza, in lasagna, etc. While your sausage cooks, make the seasoning mix. You'll use this both in preparation and possibly sprinkled on top if you like things extra-spicy. This makes far more than you'll need for a single batch of jambalaya. Mix well and store in a clean jar or sealed sandwich bag.

2 1/2 teaspoons paprika

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons garlic powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried thyme

Next, do your dicing, until you have

1/4 to 1 cup chopped onion

1/4 to 1 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/4 to 1 cup chopped celery

We always go with about a cup of each, because it makes more jambalaya without adding anything that's not terrific both in terms of taste and texture and healthy aspects like fiber. You do want to have approximately equal amounts of the holy trio of Creole veggies.

On the same cutting board

1/2 cup tomato, diced and set aside in a small bowl
2 Tablespoons chopped garlic, add to tomatoes
2 to 6 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut into1/2-inch pieces

1 small chicken breast, 4 to 6 ounces, diced into 1/2-inch pieces

Put the shrimp and chicken in a bowl with 1 Tablespoon of the seasoning mix. Blend well and set aside.

Get out and measure the rest of what you need:

2 Tablespoons olive oil, placed in large saucepan or dutch oven
3 bay leaves, add to tomatoes

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, add to tomatoes

1 teaspoon hot sauce, add to tomatoes

1 cup rice

3 cups chicken broth or stock

Salt and pepper

Heat oil over high heat with onion, pepper and celery, 3 minutes. Add garlic, tomatoes, bay leaves, Worcestershire and hot sauces.Mix well. Stir in rice and slowly add broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook until rice absorbs liquid and becomes tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 to 25 minutes. When rice is just tender add shrimp and chicken mixture and sausage. Cook until shrimp and chicken are done, about 10 minutes more. [Stir often. Here is when it starts sticking to the bottom on the pan and burning.] Season to taste with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning.

Serve with an ice cold beer or plenty of red wine.

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