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Cajun Style Jambalaya

The famous New Orleans staple of rice, sausage, chicken, and their local delicacy, Tasso ham.

Cajun Style Jambalaya

Ingredients

  • 1 lb of smoked sausage or andouille sausage, sliced
  • 2 lbs of boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lb of Tasso ham (or the bastardized version), cubed
  • 2 tsp of thyme
  • 2 tsp of basil
  • 2 tsp of red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp of pepper
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups of long-grain rice
  • 2 tsp of parsley

Instructions

  1. In a large stock pot, place the sausage and chicken in at high heat.
  2. Cook the meats until they are slightly browned on the outside. Be sure to scrape the sides of the pot as you cook.
  3. Lower the heat to medium and add in the onion and garlic. Cook until the onions become soft and more transparent.
  4. Add in the Tasso ham (or your substitute), thyme, basil, red pepper and regular pepper.
  5. Turn the heat to low and simmer for ten minutes.
  6. Add in the chicken stock and turn the heat back up to high. Bring to a boil.
  7. Reduce the heat to medium and gently stir in the rice and parsley.
  8. When the liquids start to boil again, turn the heat to low, cover the pot, and simmer for about 25 minutes or until the rice is done.

Quick Notes

It’s important to scrape the sides of the pot as you cook this dish. You don’t want burned gunk ending up in the dish.

Have extra chicken broth on hand in case the rice isn’t done and your liquids are gone. Add more and continue until the rice is finished to your taste.

Variations

The particular variation I decided to go seafood-free. However, jambalaya is very much known for seafood like Paella. So feel free to add in shrimp, oysters, or even crawfish if you can get them. Some will even put in game meats and exotic meats known to the region, like alligator. You can also add in vegetables to your taste. Red and green peppers add a nice color and flavor.

As stated before, if you can’t find Tasso ham, then try my “bastardized” version, or use some curked and cooked chorizo. If you would rather not go in any of those directions, then season the jambalaya as you see fit for desired hotness. Andouille sausage will add fire to the taste if you like.

Tags: cajun, Chicken, jambalaya, mardi gras, sausage

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