On a cold winter night, it’s lots of fun to eat a spicy meal that will warm you up from the inside out. This hearty dish definitely fits the bill. Chicken and sausage are combined with the holy trinity, onions, peppers and celery, plus tomatoes, rice, a little heat from Cajun seasoning, cayenne pepper and a splash of hot pepper sauce. Feel free to adjust the heat in this dish to suit personal taste.
If you’re from New Orleans or know much about the food, you’ll probably recognize that this is not a truly Cajun dish. Authentic jambalaya does not contain any tomatoes, and it contains smoked sausage instead of andouille. Some folks will insist that any dish containing tomatoes and substituting smoked sausage or andouille cannot be called true jambalaya. Whatever it’s called, however, it’s truly delicious. Serve with some hot, crusty bread and you’ve got a complete meal.
Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1/2 pound smoked sausage, diced
- Cajun seasoning
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (15 oz ) can whole tomatoes
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup uncooked white rice
- 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- Hot pepper sauce to taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Cook the sausage until it is lightly browned. Remove with a slotted spoon. Add the chicken to the pot, sprinkle with a little Cajun seasoning and cook until nicely browned on both sides. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
Sauté the onion, green pepper, and celery in pan drippings over medium heat, adding a teaspoon or so of vegetable oil, if needed. Cook until onions are translucent and other veggies are beginning to soften. Add the garlic and sauté for an additional minute or two until the garlic is fragrant.
Before adding the tomatoes, crush them with your hands until they are very well mashed. Add the tomatoes, and the chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Add the rice, cayenne pepper, bay leaves oregano and thyme, as well as the browned chicken and sausage. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until rice is done and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Add hot sauce and season with salt and pepper if desired. Remove bay leaves. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
Makes 6-8 servings
Copeland’s has closed
Speaking of Cajun food, Copelands, located at 3302 West Kenosha, has closed.