Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mardi Gras

Yesterday I went to Penzey's (the fabulous spice store). There's always something there to inspire me. They are featuring their new Cajun spice blend so I bought some and then got all the ingredients to try a new recipe for red beans and rice for Mardi Gras. I'll report back on the red beans and rice recipe. I should be wearing multiple strands of colored beads. I should be dancing. You can dance, you can cook, you can eat spicy food. It will make you strong. There are so many variations in jambalaya recipes. This is a good start. Put on the Cajun music and dance while you’re cooking.


1 tablespoon quality olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 pound chicken breasts, cut in 2” cubes
¾ pound andouille sausage, in ½” slices
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, minced
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
1 ½ teaspoon Cajun seasoning*
1 pound peeled raw shrimp

* I use Penzey’s Very Hot Cajun seasoning. Substitute whatever Cajun seasoning you like. Also the intensity of the andouille varies, so adjust according to your preferences.

Heat oil in large Dutch oven. Add onion, garlic, peppers, and celery (the “Holy Trinity” of Cajun cooking) and sauté just until onion is translucent.

In non-stick skillet, brown sausage, drain grease, and add to the pot with vegetables. Add chicken breast pieces to skillet and brown lightly. Add chicken to Dutch oven.

Add canned tomatoes and spices to Dutch oven and simmer, covered, over low heat for approximately 1 ½ hours.

Add shrimp and simmer for additional 15 minutes.

Serve over cooked long-grain white rice.

Serves 8.

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