To Do This Weekend: Cook up a Pot of Jambalaya

Creole-style jambalaya originates from New Orleans, in the original French Quarter. It was an attempt by the Spanish to make paella, but the spice saffron was inexpensive and difficult to obtain. Therefore, tomatoes became the substitute for saffron.  The dish has evolved over time to include French and Caribbean spices.  It’s an easy dish to prepare; perfect for a chilly fall weekend.

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new orleans style jambalaya (adapted from allrecipes)

Heat 1 tablespoon of peanut oil in a large heavy Dutch oven over medium heat. Season the sausage and chicken pieces with Cajun seasoning. Saute sausage until browned. Remove with slotted spoon, and set aside. Add 1 tablespoon peanut oil, and saute chicken pieces until lightly browned on all sides. Remove with a slotted spoon, and set aside.

In the same pot, saute onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic until tender. Stir in crushed tomatoes, and season with red pepper, black pepper, salt, hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce and file powder. Stir in chicken and sausage. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the rice and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed.