Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Jambalaya II

Jambalaya II
From: Bumbazine

Two notes from Bumba:
1) I apologize about my recipe.... Apparently I would have you add your chicken to the pot twice. You don't have to do that. Once is enough. 

2) Jambalaya is kind of like spaghetti in that everyone has their own recipe, and no two ever seem to be the same. Please keep that in mind.

Anyway, here it is:


about 1 lb. chicken parts
1 lb shrimp, preferably medium sized
1 BIG yellow onion, chopped
1-2 cups long grain white rice
3-4 celery stalks, chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 green, or red, or yellow, bell pepper
2 regular sized cans of stewed chunked tomatoes
2 (or more) cans of chicken broth
1-2 Tbsp chili powder
cayenne pepper
cooking oil

optional (see text):
a pound of Andoille or other sausage
bay leaves
Old Bay Seasoning
poultry seasoning
Crab and Shrimp boil

Jambalaya is kind of like spaghetti in that everyone has their own recipe, and no two ever seem to be the same, but the basic premise is: two or more kinds of meat, or shellfish, cooked with rice, tomatoes and other vegetables.
The variation most often asked for around my house is chicken and shrimp, and I do it this way: (How you do it is up to you. Improvise.)

In a sauce pan, boil your chicken parts seasoned with salt, pepper, a little poultry seasoning, and bay leaves (or just salt and pepper, if you’d rather.)
Meanwhile, chop up one big yellow onion, three or four celery stalks, three or four cloves of garlic, and a green bell pepper. Taste the pepper when you chop, sometimes they’re bitter. A red or yellow bell would be more than welcome here instead, if you like.
Coat the bottom of a large pot with oil and sauté the onion, garlic, celery and pepper over medium heat until the onion is translucent, seasoning with salt and pepper as you go.
If you're putting in sausage, chop it up and put it in now. Saute it a bit.
Pour in at least two cans of chicken broth and two cans of peeled tomato chunks.
As soon as your chicken parts are cool enough, skin and de-bone them and chop or shred, then add to the pot.
Put in at least a tablespoon of chili powder. Most folks also add cayenne pepper, but my friends and family are a little timid about that stuff, so I take it easy on them. A little dried thyme would be welcome here also. Taste! Taste! Taste!
Strain off the chicken, and add the broth to the pot. Chop the chicken into bite sized pieces and add to the pot.
When the pot comes up to a slow boil, add at least a cup of long grain white rice. Remember that a cup of rice will absorb about two and a half cups of liquid, so adjust your liquids accordingly.
If you want the rice to absorb all the liquid, the traditional way, cover, and reduce to a simmer, just as if you were cooking any rice dish. You may, at your discretion, come back and stir the top down to the bottom part way through.
If you are serving it as a soup, (some people do), put in more liquid and stir every few minutes.
Meanwhile, rinse out the saucepan and cook the shrimp as you would normally do, using crab and shrimp boil, Old Bay Seasoning, or whatever you prefer. At least use some chili powder or something. You may add this stock to the pot later if you wish. I always do.
When the shrimp are done, drain and peel and set aside.
When the rice is done, (half an hour to an hour), turn off the heat, stir in the shrimp, and, as soon as the shrimp are hot again, serve, with Louisiana Hot Sauce on the table.

If the proportions seem sketchy, I’m sorry. I taste as I go, and so should you, and by all means, use fresh ingredients instead of canned if you have them.

The above recipe isn't quite what I do these days. I cook the shrimp earlier and add the shrimp broth to the pot before putting in the rice. Also, if you're using sausage, you put it in and saute with the onions, etc, before adding the broth. Some people put in some tomato paste after the onion is translucent and saute everything some more til the tomato paste gets brown some. I don't, but I'm just sayin'

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