Friday, March 5, 2021

Creole Jambalaya

When you’ve relished a dish since what seems like forever, having it “at the ready” in your kitchen is a treat worth celebrating—and sharing.  Cue my beloved Jambalaya that recently made its (long overdue) debut in my cooking chronicles. 


As a devoted foodie and home cook, I inevitably find myself recreating favorite dishes from my dining out forays.  From Lemon Thyme Bars, to Warm Goat Cheese Salad, to Roasted Branzino, and more, it keeps the memories--and good eats--deliciously alive.  Yet, somehow, Jambalaya never made the cut—until a couple of weekends ago, when I reserved a sun-kissed Sunday afternoon to keep the tradition going.  And considering the ease with which it came together, I’m banking that it'll be in rotation going forward. 

As someone who’s all about a bit of kick and spice in my dishes, Jambalaya has always delivered on this front.  Reminiscent of another favorite dish, Paella, it’s like a spicier Cajun or Creole cousin that hails from Louisiana cuisine.  And speaking of Cajun and Creole, I decided to make the tomato-based Creole version this time around.  Hearty spices, Andouille sausage, chicken and shrimp, rice, tomatoes (and tomato paste), aromatics, and other flavorings, made for a one-pot wonder that you can bring together within an hour.

If all of that speaks to you as it does to me, then you want this recipe in your repertoire.  Pair with a salad and some crusty bread (or not) for a well-rounded, delicious meal.  From the very first fork-full, I was reminded why it's been a favorite for so long and always induces...

Happy Eating!

Creole Jambalaya


1 lb. Andouille sausage, sliced into rounds

1 lb. fresh or frozen shrimp

1 lb. skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into chunks

1 1/2 cups long grain rice

1 can 14 oz. diced tomatoes

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 onion, diced

2 bell peppers (I used green and red), diced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning

½ teaspoon ground black pepper

1 teaspoon each of salt, dried thyme, oregano and hot sauce of choice

½ teaspoon of Cayenne (use less if desired)

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons olive or canola oil

3 cups chicken broth

Scallions and fresh parsley, chopped, to garnish

Cook’s note: Celery is traditionally included, however I didn’t have any on hand, so be sure to add if desired.



In a large dutch oven or pot, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat.  Season the sausage and chicken with 1 tablespoon of the Cajun seasoning.


Brown the sausage in the oil; remove and drain using a slotted spoon and set aside.  Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pot and cook the chicken until lightly browned.  Similarly remove, drain and set aside.


Sauté the onion and bell pepper until softened.  Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds to a minute.  Stir in the tomatoes and tomato paste and season with the salt, pepper, herbs, spices, Worcestershire and remaining tablespoon of Cajun seasoning. Cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally.


Add in the rice and chicken broth and bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low.  Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is cooked fully, stirring occasionally.


Add the shrimp to the mixture, stir in gently and cover the pot with a lid. Allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are cooked through (about 5-6 minutes, or slightly longer, if frozen) and pink in color, indicating doneness.


Taste and adjust seasonings, as needed, then remove from heat.  Serve with garnish of scallions and parsley—and enjoy!


Recipe adapted from Cafe Delites





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