Sunday, March 30, 2014


The beginnings of jambayala...YUM!

On March 29, 2014 cousin Julie and I threw an engagement party for our Miss Mary Shaw and her Richie. It was a Mardi Gras-themed party and I was tasked with making a NOLA jambalaya. Around 20 years ago, GB and I were at a party where the hosts served jambalaya. It was absolutely delicious so I'd asked them for the recipe, which they happily share. Fast-forward to the engagement party, and it was the very first time I ever used their recipe. I used the original recipe as a starting point and then ended up just doing my own thing - a throw-n-go type of thing for sure! Note: As basmati is my go-to rice, Frank's Original RedHot Sauce is our family's go-to hot sauce - nothing better out there! Just love cayenne pepper and can't stand Tabasco Sauce - don't like the pepper it's made out of.

Below is what I did, but, as it was for me with the original recipe, it's just a starting point - just throw and go! Delicious results will be in your future! (Below makes about 3 - 4 gallons; reduce amounts to suit your needs.)
olive oil
2.5 lb. package Costco AMYLU gluten-free Andouille sausage (or equivalent) 
6 lb. (approximate) package Costco boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 large yellow onions, chopped
2 large yellow peppers, chopped
2 large green peppers, chopped
4 large red peppers, chopped
6 garlic cloves, coarsely minced
4 to 5 -14.5 oz.cans petite or regular diced tomatoes 
4 to 5++ 32 oz. boxes chicken stock (I used Whole Foods 365 organic brand)
parsley, chopped
Frank’s Original RedHot Sauce (I used 1/2 of a 12 oz. bottle)
~Cajun Seasonings~ by Penzey’s (Hand-mixed from: paprika, salt, celery, sugar, garlic, black pepper, onion, oregano, red pepper, caraway, dill, turmeric, cumin, bay, mace, cardamom, basil, marjoram, rosemary, and thyme. 
2 1/2 C. basmati rice, rinsed before cooking 
3 lbs. fresh shrimp, shelled, tail too (bay scallops could be used as well)
Cook the 2 1/2 C. rice in 5 c. water till just done.
Cut the sausage into 1/4” slices. Cut the chicken into chunks. Remove the tail from the shrimp and cut them in half.  
In a large skillet heat enough olive oil to smear the bottom of the skillet. Place sausage sliced in the skillet in a single layer and sauté until brown. Turn slices over and sauté until that side is brown. Do this in batches and throw done slices in a very large soup pot. (Mine is a 3-gallon All Clad soup pot that I absolutely adore - Thanks Kimmy!) Add the onions, peppers and garlic to the skillet (with more olive oil if necessary) and sauté until done. Do this in batches if necessary as you want the veggies to brown and not steam. When done, add veggies to the soup pot. 
Generously sprinkle the chicken with the Cajun seasonings and sauté in the skillet, adding more olive oil if needed. Do this in batches. When done, add chicken to the big pot. 
Add 4 of the 32 oz. boxes to the soup pot and also the rice. Bring pot to a boil and then simmer until the rice is done. Skim fat off if necessary. 
At this point, you can hold the jambalaya until 20 minutes before you’re ready to serve it. 
Add the shrimp about 15 minutes before you are eating, heat the soup, add more broth if it is too thick and serve. 

Crusty bread is a perfect side. Delicious!


'till we feast again!