Jambalaya

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Must be the season for Jambalaya.  I noticed there was a special on fresh caught Gulf shrimp.  And that’s the first thing that popped into my mind.

Then the woman next to me asked “Do you have any Andouille sausage?”  The guy behind the counter said “You’re the 3rd person in a row, buying shrimp to make Jambalaya.”

There are a lot of variations in this dish as well. But mainly, you are going to use shrimp, sausage, and some kind of meat like chicken or ham, or in this case, smoked turkey.  It’s similar to Gumbo but not exactly the same.  It’s also similar to Etouffee, but not exactly the same either.  If you like one, you’re going to like all of them. If I had to get particular about the history of the dish, I would say that you honestly should cook the rice in the same pot.  I cook it separately because I am almost always taking it over to someone else’s house, and I don’t want it to be mushy by the time they eat it.  Stirring the rice in at the end works just fine.

This is one of my family’s favorite dishes.  And curiously enough, my son likes to eat it with chopsticks.  I have no idea why, I never asked.

Jambalaya 

This is 4 servings

1 28 oz can whole tomatoes (separate the juice, it should be about a cup of liquid)

2 T butter, separated

1/2 pound sliced Andouille sausage

1/2 pound shredded smoked turkey

12 shrimp shelled and deveined

1 C chopped onion

1 C sliced celery

1 C chopped green pepper

1 minced jalapeno

2 cloves garlic

1 heaping teaspoon dried oregano (you can definitely use more if you want)

1 heaping teaspoon dried thyme  (you can use more)

1 t onion powder

1 t garlic powder

1 T smoked paprika

1 t black pepper

1-2 t salt

1 t worcestershire sauce

1 t chicken base

1 C bone or regular chicken broth

1 t clam juice

1 C long grain rice

Hot sauce and sliced green onion for garnish

Melt 1 T butter in a french oven over med low heat.  Add sausage until it starts to get a little brown, then add the turkey, herbs, and spices.  Mix well.  Add the onion, peppers, celery, garlic, and worcestershire sauce.  Once the onions are translucent, add the whole tomatoes and crush them slightly open with your spoon.  Once the liquid from the tomatoes starts to bubble (boil) stir in the chicken base and break the tomatoes apart a little more with your spoon.  You can add hot sauce if you want – I just have it as a side. As the tomatoes cook they will break down even more.  Reduce heat to simmer and cover, stirring once in a while, for about 45 minutes or so.  Like many things, the longer it goes the better it tastes.

Bring tomato sauce/juice, bone broth, and clam juice to a boil.  Add 1 T of the butter, and the rice.  Reduce heat to simmer, and cook covered (no peaking) for about 15 minutes or per package instructions.

After the rice is cooked, add your shrimp to the jambalaya and cook for about 8 minutes or so, or until the shrimp are done.  I bury them in the liquid.

Stir in your rice and serve in a bowl topped with sliced green onion and a side of your favorite hot sauce.

 

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