A One Pot Cajun Blessing

Has this whole isolation thing already worn you out? Are you tired of coming up with something new to cook for dinner each day? While this isn’t really a problem for someone like me who loves to cook, some of my friends tell me they’ve pretty much exhausted the limits of their cooking skills.

And their patience.

I’ll tell you what wears me out. Cleaning up. The counters, the dishes, the floor (although Hootie is a splendid help here) , the everything. The sole reason I would love my own cooking show? Someone else does the dishes. They wash the 12 pots and pans and various sizes of mixing bowls and platters and spatulas and knives and YOU NAME IT -I SEEM TO USE IT ALL.

And I’m not even sure how it all happens.

Anyway, for me, a one-pot meal is a wonderful, healing and transfomative thing. This Jambalaya is just that! I made an extra huge batch this morning for some of JT’s survey guys who are working here in town. I had plenty to feed them with lots left for our supper- and all in one pan! (Albeit it’s a big pan!)

Jambalaya is one of those things that lends itself well to additions and substitutions and sometimes even my own forgetfulness! You can dress it up or down, turn up the heat or make it mild. Substitute proteins (sausage, chicken, shrimp, crawfish) and generally tailor it to the tastes of your family. You can even forget several of the ingredients and still end up with a wonderful dish.

Not that I have ever done that.

In the picture below you can see a couple of things I used instead of what’s actually listed in the ingredients- a girl has to improvise sometimes!

The important thing is, it’s tasty and it doesn’t keep you in the kitchen for hours AFTER dinner.

You can read all the substitutions/deletions/ changes I made in italics in the ingredient list- we’re all working with limited pantry and fridge supplies right now. And because I was pressed for time, I browned the sausage, the chicken, the peppers, onion, and garlic (with the Better than Bouillon) all at the same time!

No one said you can’t just be your own person.

Hope you enjoy this one is much as I do!!

One Pot Jambalaya

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 tablespoons cooking oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, (adjust to suit your tastes/heat preference – I just used about 1 1/2 T
  • 10 ounces andouille sausage, sliced into rounds ( I had no andouille today – I used the sausage in photo)
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 stalks/ribs celery, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Better than Bouillon Chicken Flavor (I use low sodium)
  • 14 ounces can crushed tomatoes (I used a can of diced tomatoes that I put in the food processor for a few spins!)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon each dried thyme and dried oregano (I completely forgot these today!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes ( I used some of the chili/onion mix in photo- get it at Trader Joe’s)
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (Left this out today)
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup thinly sliced okra (no okra today!)
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked white rice (short grain or long grain)
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • Sliced green onions and chopped parsley, to garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Season the sausage and chicken pieces with half of the Cajun seasoning. 
  • Brown sausage in the hot oil; remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Add remaining oil to the pot and sauté chicken until lightly browned. Remove with slotted spoon; set aside.
  • Sauté the onion, bell pepper and celery until onion is soft and transparent.  Add the garlic and Better than Bouillon and cook until fragrant (30 seconds).
  • Stir in the tomatoes; season with salt, pepper, thyme, oregano, red pepper flakes (or Cayenne powder), hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and the remaining Cajun seasoning. Stir in the okra slices (or file powder), chicken and sausage. Cook for 5 minutes, while stirring occasionally.
  • Add in the rice and chicken broth, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low-medium. Cover and let simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked.
  • Season with a little extra salt and pepper if needed and remove from heat. Adjust heat with extra hot sauce, Cayenne pepper or Cajun seasoning. Serve immediately with sliced green onions and parsley. 

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