Living in New Orleans opened my eyes to a whole new set of recipes that I otherwise never would’ve encountered. And now that I can’t get my favorites from all the amazing non-chain restaurants I used to live near, I have to make do with home made versions.
That said, I actually began making this recipe while I still lived in NOLA and while I’m the first to admit that it’s not absolutely authentic to my favorite city and their cajun cuisine, it is still delicious. And easy and not too bad for you, which I think is the mark of a good recipe.
So let’s start cooking. Just as a warning, it looks like a lot of ingredients, but it’s not so bad, I promise. This is totally doable. If you can chop everything up and stir, you can absolutely cook this jambalaya.
(adapted from Cooking Light)
Serves: 4 dinner portions, can easily be doubled to serve 8
Olive oil for pan
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced (not chicken breast halves, should be between .5-1 pound of chicken)
6 oz Smoked turkey sausage
3/4 cup diced white onion
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
3/4 cup uncooked long-grain rice
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1/2 cup water
16 oz chicken broth/stock
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes with green chiles, undrained
1/2 pound medium peeled and deveined shrimp (if desired, I left them out this time because I was feeling cheap)
1/2 tsp hot sauce
1. Heat oil in dutch oven or large pot over medium heat. Add chicken, sausage, onions and bell peppers. Cook 5 minutes, stirring fairly frequently.
2. Add rice, cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent the rice from sticking to the pan.
3. Add in the thyme, black pepper and ground red pepper, cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
4. Add water, chicken broth/stock and tomatoes. Stir to combine.
5. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. I usually uncover it and stir it once about half way through to prevent rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
This is what it will look like when it starts to boil
And after 15 minutes of simmering, the rice will absorb a bunch of liquid and it’ll be less watery.
6. After 15 minutes of simmering covered, add in a few shakes of hot sauce (depending upon how much you like spice), if you’re adding shrimp, now is when you want to toss it in. Stir, then cover the pot and continue cooking for 5 more minutes.
This is my very favorite hot sauce, I got hooked on it in New Orleans and I can still sometimes find it at my local grocery store.
7. After 5 minutes most of the liquid should be absorbed and if you’re using shrimp, they should be nice and pink and cooked through.
Now all that’s left is to scoop into bowls and enjoy!
It’s especially delicious served with warm corn bread. Which now I really wish I had to eat with my leftovers tonight.