The Free Motion Quilting Project: Josh's Jambalaya

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Josh's Jambalaya

It's the start of the month and time to piece our new block for the Building Blocks Quilt Along. Since I'm using Spoonflower cheater fabric, I get to skip this step.

How about a recipe today?

This one comes from my roots, having grown up outside New Orleans. This is my take on Cajun/Creole chef John Besh's recipe. If you love the cuisine of New Orleans, do yourself a favor and pick up his stellar cookbook, My New Orleans: The Cookbook. First, this tome is massive, full of amazing recipes that run the gamut of both cajun and creole cuisines. Second, it really tells the story of New Orleans, the city's history and culture, all through sharing amazing food.

Josh's Jambalaya

1 Tbs bacon grease (or olive oil)
free motion quilting | Leah Day
1/2 pound bacon ends, diced
1 large white onion, diced
1 small red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, diced
2 red fresno chiles, diced, seeds included (optional)
1 stalk celery, diced
2 bay leaves 
4 cloves garlic, minced
Cooked Andouille sausage, 1-2 per person, sliced
2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 tsp celery salt
3 cups chicken broth
1 8 oz can chopped tomatoes, drained
1.5 cup uncooked jasmine rice
3 green onions, chopped

In a large cast iron pot, add bacon grease and bacon ends. Turn heat on medium. When bacon begins to brown, add onion and sweat down for at least 5 minutes--you want to brown the onion. Add more bacon grease if your ordinance becomes too dry.

Add bell pepper, fresno chiles, celery, and bay leaves. Cook and sweat down for another 5 minutes, closer to ten. Your goal here is to reduce the vegetables as much as possible as this is your foundation of flavor. Push everything to one side, add more bacon grease or olive oil to bottom of pan, and finally add garlic. Heat for no more than two minutes as you do NOT want your garlic to brown.

Add your salt and dried seasoning, incorporating into the base. With your chicken broth nearby, add your uncooked rice. This is the most critical step of the process. Thoroughly mix in the rice, coating every grain with the bacon grease and flavors. When rice is slightly toasted, pour in chicken broth.

Add canned tomatoes and sliced andouille sausage and stir well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and now cover your cast iron pot. Let cook for 12-15 minutes or until rice opens up and softens.

Remove from heat and finally add chopped green onions. Discard bay leaves. Serve alongside Tabasco sauce.

Serves 4 but can easily be modified to serve 6, 8, or even a dozen people... but you're going to need a bigger boat!

This is a great dish because it's easy to prepare and is always impressive. People will think it's like red beans and rice or gumbo and that you've been cooking all day!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Josh just tried your Jambalaya recipes - awesome. Have had it once before but it didn't hit the mark like yours. However, did not know what andouille sausge was so used chorizo instead. Keep up the good work


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