Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Basic Jambalaya

In my house, we joke that I run the kitchen like a college cafeteria, and by that, I mean I love theme nights! I like to dye food green on St. Patrick's day, shape food into hearts on Valentine's Day, eat Mexican food on Cinco de Mayo, etc. etc. So of course, I took advantage of Mardi Gras and decided to try my hand at a classic New Orleans dish--Jambalaya. I think I have eaten jambalaya maybe once in my entire life (same goes for my husband a.k.a. my taste-tester), so we actually had no real point of comparison. So without any preconceived notions, we thought this was delicious.

I got the recipe from Martha Stewart,but I had to make a couple of adjustments. They didn't have any andouille sausage at the grocery store, but the butcher told me, "well, if you're talking jambalaya, what you really want is chorizo." So I trusted him, but since I was worried the jambalaya wouldn't be spicy enough without the andouille sausage, I threw in 1/2 a teaspoon of cayenne pepper. I think it had enough kick, but you can always taste and add more if necessary.

Here is what you will need:

Step 1: Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes per side. Cut into 3/4-inch pieces; set aside.

Step 2: Cut the vegetables, and add vegetables to pot. Cook, stirring, 5 minutes.

Step 3: Add sausage; cook 3 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute.

Step 4: Stir in stock, Old Bay, tomatoes, and 1/2 cup water; bring to a boil. Add rice and chicken. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes.

Step 5: Cover; remove from heat. Let stand until rice is tender and liquid is mostly absorbed, 30 to 35 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

List of ingredients:
1/4 cup olive oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
3 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 pound andouille sausage, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (I used Chorizo*)
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken stock
3/4 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1 can (14 ounces) crushed tomatoes with juice
1 cup long-grain rice

*if using chorizo, add 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper for some additional kick.

1 comment:

  1. Wow Maria, that looks great. Since you cook Cajun food for Mardi Gras (clearly a 4th rate holiday) I look forward to seeing the lovely Italian dish you cook in celebration of Columbus Day (clearly a 3rd rate holiday).

    Carnivorous in Chicago


Thank you for taking the time to write! I appreciate the feedback.