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Jambalaya recipe

by Dec 7

I've adapted this recipe for myself over the years. It contains ingredients that I've experimented with and decided to add that are outside my Mawmaw's (grandmother) recipe, though this is heavily based on her recipe. Again in honor of the holidays, and because someone asked, I'm sharing another of my Mawmaw's recipes. The picture is borrowed from Wikimedia. INGREDIENTS: -- 1 large onion or two small onions (yellow or sweet) -- 2 bell peppers (any color) -- 4 stalks celery -- 2-6 fresh peppers (I like a combination of habaneros, jalapenos, and green chilies; skip this if you're sensitive and increase based on how spicy you like it) -- 1 small can tomato paste -- 1 16 oz can diced, skinned tomatoes (or crushed) -- 1 ring smoked sausage (Kielbasa is fine, but tasso or andouille are preferred) -- 2 cups rice -- 2 cups chicken broth (or beef, or pork) -- 1 small can smoked jalapenos in adobo sauce (this is not in the original recipe) -- 1 tablespoon oil (any oil is fine, you can also use bacon grease, lard, Crisco, etc) -- assorted other protein (I typically use chicken and shrimp, but your mileage may vary) -- garlic, paprika, cayenne, bay leaf, cumin, salt and pepper to taste OPTIONAL: -- Tabasco or another vinegary hot sauce -- sliced green onions NOTES: This is best made in a dutch oven or other cast iron, heavy pot. You'll want something that can take the heat of an oven. This can be done on the stove top, but you'll have to watch it carefully to prevent burning due to the direct heat of the stove elements. You can moderate the heat by reducing or removing the fresh peppers, can of smoked jalapenos, and cayenne. If all these elements are removed from the recipe, increase the amount of paprika proportionally. The heat level for this dish is very variable (hence the adjustments) but it is generally intended to make you sweat. The vinegar hot sauce is intended to 'brighten' the flavor just before serving. More liquid may be added as necessary during the cooking process--this is particularly likely to be necessary if using stove top due to uneven heating and evaporation or if using foil, due to the inability to 'seal' the liquids in during cooking. If using tasso, do not brown. All measures are approximate. I did not learn to cook using measuring cups. INSTRUCTIONS: If using a dutch oven or cast iron pan, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Chop onion, bell peppers, celery, and fresh peppers over medium heat. Saute in the tablespoon of oil until soft and translucent. Remove from pot and set aside. Slice sausage. If using chicken, beef, or pork, dice into small chunks (~1 inch in diameter or slightly smaller.) In the same pot, lightly brown the non-seafood protein. When browned, remove from pot and set aside. Add onion, bell peppers, celery, and fresh peppers back into pot. If using garlic (not powder), add to pot and saute for 1 min or until fragrant. Add tomato paste and smoked jalapenos to pot and saute for 1 min, mashing the smoked jalapenos to break them up. Add diced, skinned tomatoes with their juice, broth, and rice. Add more broth as necessary to cover the contents of the pot (the amount listed in the ingredients should be enough, but just in case, more can be added here. Just make sure the contents of the pot have a layer of moisture that reaches just above the solid components.) Season with paprika, cayenne, bay leaves, cumin, and pepper. If using garlic powder, add it here. If using seafood, add it here. Do not salt. If using oven, put lid or foil over top of pot and insert in oven for 20-25 minutes or until rice is done. If using stove top, put lid on pot and cook over low to medium heat for 20-25 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes to prevent burning. Take jambalaya off heat. Most of the liquid should be absorbed, leaving a thick, spicy residue. Fluff the rice and stir through, salting as necessary (many of the ingredients are quite salty, which is why this comes last.) Enjoy!


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