Shrimp and Andouille Sausage Jambalaya- Serves 8-10
2 slices thick cut bacon, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup sweet onion, diced
7 ounces Andouille sausage (for spicy version) or 4 ounces (for less spicy)
1 cup celery, diced
1 cup green pepper, diced
4 garlic cloves, smashed then minced
2 cups long grain white rice
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
3 and 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
(if you have any extra broth- save to add to leftovers)
3 bay leaves
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
2 pounds frozen raw shrimp, thawed
Garnish: celery leaves or fresh parsley
Dice bacon and cook until crisp in a large Dutch oven. When crisp, drain bacon on a paper towel and save drippings in Dutch oven. Reserve cooked bacon for another use. While bacon is cooking: thaw shrimp according to package directions. Dice onion, celery, and tomatoes. Mince garlic.
Add olive oil to Dutch oven over medium heat until sizzling hot. Add Andouille sausage and onions. Cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until onions are clear and sausage is browned. Add celery and green pepper. Cook 5 minutes more. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add rice, Cajun seasoning, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes stirring the whole time until the rice is coated with oil. If there is excess oil in the pan Stir a piece of paper towel around the bottom of the pot to absorb most of the the excess oil. You want to leave a little oil in the pot because it contains a lot of flavor!
Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, bay leaves, and thyme. Stir, bring to a slow simmer, reduce the heat and cover with a lid. Cook for 20 minutes or until 3/4 of the liquid is gone. (Don’t stir) Add the shrimp on top of the rice (don’t stir the shrimp in the rice- you want to steam the shrimp). Cover pot and cook for 7 to 10 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and cooked. The rice should be tender and the liquid absorbed. Garnish with celery leaves or fresh parsley.
Reheats well in the microwave. Enjoy!
Published in The News and Neighbor on March 1, 2014